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Biden Administration's Actions Against Anticompetitive Practices in Healthcare: A Move to Lower Costs and Improve Access

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Mason Walker
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Biden Administration's Actions Against Anticompetitive Practices in Healthcare: A Move to Lower Costs and Improve Access

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A Stand Against Anticompetitive Practices in Healthcare

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The Biden administration is making significant strides to counter anticompetitive practices in the healthcare sector. This move, primarily focused on high prescription drug costs and stricter reviews of healthcare mergers and acquisitions, is a part of a larger federal inquiry into corporate healthcare greed. The administration is appointing a chief competition officer, a role that will play a pivotal part in these proceedings.

Three major organizations, the Department of Justice (DOJ), the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), will collaborate and share data to identify transactions that violate antitrust laws. In addition, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is releasing ownership data for healthcare facilities. This initiative aims to expose and combat the negative impact of market consolidation on healthcare access and cost, particularly in rural areas.

Lowering Healthcare and Prescription Drug Costs

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According to a fact sheet on the White House website, a primary focus of these new actions is to lower healthcare and prescription drug costs by promoting competition. The administration is actively tackling price gouging and scrutinizing anticompetitive acquisitions and practices, all with the goal to increase Americans' access to life-saving medications.

Joint efforts are being made by the FTC, DOJ, and HHS to lower healthcare costs and promote competition to benefit patients and healthcare workers. These agencies are united in their endeavor to counter anticompetitive acquisitions and practices in the healthcare sector.

Political Stance on the Actions

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The Biden-Harris administration's efforts to lower healthcare and prescription drug costs have been met with criticism from MAGA Republicans, who are perceived as siding with big pharma. Despite the criticism, the administration is determined to bring down prescription drug costs for American families and address corporate greed in healthcare.

Using March-in Rights to Address High Drug Prices

Another significant move made by the White House is the announcement of its readiness to deploy march-in rights to address high drug prices. March-in rights refer to the government's authority to seize certain drug patents and license them to other manufacturers to lower prices. The administration has outlined a new framework for US agencies to use these rights, especially focusing on high-priced, taxpayer-funded drugs. This move, as expected, has received mixed responses from the industry.

The Biden administration's actions are a clear signal of its intent to promote fair competition in the healthcare sector, lower prescription drug costs, and improve patient access to essential healthcare services. While the outcome of these efforts remains to be seen, the administration is sending a strong message to the industry and the public: healthcare should be accessible and affordable for all, not just a privileged few.

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