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Advisory Panel Targets Rising Medicare Drug Costs In Its Latest Report To Congress
Kaiser Health News

Congress should move to slow spending in Medicare’s drug benefit by adopting a package of changes that could save billions, but would also add costs to insurers and have mixed effects on enrollees, an independent advisory commission said Wednesday.

In its June report to Congress, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission warned that rising drug costs and other factors have helped drive Medicare Part D spending up nearly 60 percent from 2007 to 2014.

The commission recommends an interrelated set of proposals it estimates could save at least $10 billion over five years, partly by encouraging more use of generic drugs and also by creating incentives for insurers to negotiate better prices from drug makers. While MedPAC recommendations are considered influential, most experts don’t expect Congress to pursue those changes during an election year.

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