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"Stop Rx Greed" Campaign Stops in Des Moines

The high cost of health care is believed to be one reason the rate of U.S. residents age 65 and older filing for bankruptcy increased more than 200% from 1991 to 2016. (aarp.org)
The high cost of health care is believed to be one reason the rate of U.S. residents age 65 and older filing for bankruptcy increased more than 200% from 1991 to 2016. (aarp.org)
June 25, 2019

DES MOINES, Iowa — Americans pay the highest prescription drug prices in the world, according to AARP, which says it's time for Americans to demand that pharmaceutical companies stop deflecting blame and reduce prices.

The AARP message is part of the "Stop Rx Greed" campaign aimed at lowering prescription drug prices.

Anthony Carroll, Iowa's AARP state advocacy director, said concern over prescription drug prices crosses all party and ideological lines.

"Americans pay the highest prescription drug costs in the world,” Carroll said. “And for us, it's really wrong that we believe so many Iowans, older Iowans, are forced to choose between filling prescriptions or buying groceries and have really seen this skyrocket."

A national survey from AARP found 47% of those polled said they had delayed filling or did not get a prescription filled because they couldn't afford it.

Today's Des Moines event is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. at Principal Park Left Field Suites at 1 Line Drive.

Nationally, 63% of those surveyed said they think the price of prescription drugs is "unreasonable." To lower them, Carroll said AARP believes Medicare should be allowed to negotiate for lower prescription drug prices, and legislation is needed to improve access to lower-cost generic drugs

"We really want this legislation to move forward,” he said. “And again, there's no one silver bullet. It's going to require a multitude of efforts to really lower prescription drug costs."

Carroll said the AARP events allow Iowans to share their stories about how the high cost of prescription drugs has impacted their lives and find out what local resources are available to them. Among those 50 and older, the AARP survey revealed 80% of respondents said they regularly take at least one prescription drug.

Disclosure: AARP Iowa contributes to our fund for reporting on Budget Policy & Priorities, Community Issues and Volunteering, Health Issues, Senior Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.
Roz Brown, Public News Service - IA