‘An Arm and a Leg’: The new cap on Medicare drug costs

On a Sunday afternoon in August, health services researcher Stacie Dusetzina was sitting alone in her office at Vanderbilt University, watching C-SPAN and crying.

The U.S. Senate was voting on the Inflation Reduction Act, which among other things is designed to ensure that people on Medicare pay less for expensive drugs.

It's a big deal. Lots of seniors pay $10,000 a year or more for drugs or do without lifesaving treatment; once the new law kicks in, it sets an out-of-pocket limit of $2,000 a year.

Dusetzina and her colleagues have spent years making the case for this change, documenting the ways current policies leave people in the lurch.

The pharmaceutical industry fought this change tooth and nail — for decades. Julie Rovner, chief Washington correspondent for KHN, takes listeners on a journey back to the late 1980s, when Congress learned the cost of messing with Big Pharma.

"An Arm and a Leg" is a co-production of KHN and Public Road Productions.

To keep in touch with "An Arm and a Leg," subscribe to the newsletter. You can also follow the show on Facebook and Twitter. And if you've got stories to tell about the health care system, the producers would love to hear from you.

Kaiser Health NewsThis article was reprinted from khn.org with permission from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. Kaiser Health News, an editorially independent news service, is a program of the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonpartisan health care policy research organization unaffiliated with Kaiser Permanente.


The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
Post a new comment
You might also like...
After Congress fails to add dental coverage, Medicare weighs limited benefit expansion