The House this week approved two measures targeting “gag clauses” that reportedly bar pharmacies from offering patients information that could save them money at the pharmacy counter.
According to a Washington Examiner report, the Patient Right to Know Drug Prices Act and the Know the Lowest Price Act passed voice votes Tuesday. The bills aim to help patients discover whether a prescription would cost less if they paid out of pocket as opposed to going through their health plan.
While the Patient Right to Know Drug Prices Act applies to individuals on private health plans, the other measure applies to patients on Medicare.
“[The bill] is a step we can take to make sure that people know if it would be cheaper to buy a prescription drug by paying out of pocket using a debit card rather than an insurance card,” Sen. Susan Collins, author and sponsor of the bill on private plans, told reporters.
Rep. Lloyd Doggett called it a “minuscule step forward.”
“Approving this modest, narrow bill is not a substitute for tackling the pervasive problem of prescription price gouging,” Doggett said. “That this bill is considered progress demonstrates how far we need to go.”