Oregon House passes prescription drug pricing transparency bill

The Oregon House took another step today to address the skyrocketing cost of prescription drug prices that are burdening Oregonians in every corner of the state.

 

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House Bill 2658 requires a 60-day notice to the Department of Consumer and Business Services if a pharmaceutical company raises the prices on brand-name drugs by 10 percent or more or an increase of $10,000 or more over a 12- month period, and on generic drugs a 25 percent increase or more and $300 or more over a three -month period.

“Whether it is an inhaler, heart medicine, or countless other prescriptions, patients in the United States pay more for prescription drugs than anywhere else in the world,” said Rep. Andrea Salinas (D-Lake Oswego), chief sponsor of the legislation. “This legislation will provide insurers and consumers with information and time to plan for price increases so they can  continue to afford their medications.

“For people who are forced to scrutinize their budget and fear increased medication expenses, sixty days can be invaluable for consulting with their families about how to afford the new price of their prescriptions, or time to speak with their doctor about changing medications.”

In the United States, prescription drug prices are rapidly outpacing inflation – in some cases, 13 times the rate of inflation.

“Every Oregonian is affected by out-of-control prescription drug prices,” said. Rep. Anna Williams (D-Hood River). “This legislation is yet another step in bringing transparency to the system and giving Oregonians the information they need to prepare. No one should have to choose between paying for life’s necessities and their lifesaving prescription drugs.”

This legislation builds on drug price transparency legislation championed by Rep. Rob Nosse (DPortland) in the 2018 session, House Bill 4005, and furthers the work of Oregon House Democrats to ensure quality, affordable health care and lower prescription drug prices. On Tuesday, the House passed House Bill 2185 to regulate Pharmacy Benefit Managers.

House Bill 2658 featured bipartisan sponsorship including Rep. Teresa Alonso Leon (DWoodburn), Rep. Julie Fahey (D-West Eugene and Junction City), Rep. Cheri Helt (R-Bend), Rep. Paul Holvey (D-Eugene), Rep. Alissa Keny-Guyer (D-Portland), Rep. Courtney Neron (D- Wilsonville), Rep. Rob Nosse (D-Portland), Rep. Rachel Prusak (D-West Linn), Rep. Sheri Schouten (D-Beaverton), Rep. Barbara Smith Warner (D-Portland), Rep. Kim Wallan (RMedford), and Rep. Williams (D-Hood River).

The legislation, which passed unanimously, goes to the Oregon Senate for consideration.

This press release was provided by the Oregon House Democrats.