skip to main content
skip to newscasts

Thursday, September 28, 2023

Public News Service Logo
facebook instagram linkedin reddit youtube twitter
view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

UAW strike continues: Officials say EPA standards must catch up; Mississippians urged to register to vote ahead of the Nov. 7 general election; NYers worry about impacts of government shutdown.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Senate leaders advance a plan to avoid a government shutdown, an elections official argues AI could be a threat to democracy and voting rights advocates look to states like Arizona to rally young Latino voters.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

A small fire department in rural Indiana is determined not to fail new moms and babies, the growing election denial movement has caused voting districts to change procedures and autumn promises spectacular scenery along America's rural byways.

Virginians Call on Congress to Regulate Prescription-Drug Costs

play audio
Play

Thursday, April 7, 2022   

CORRECTION: This story has been updated to reflect that Virginians have signed nearly 104,000 petitions urging Congress to lower drug costs.


Virginia residents have signed nearly 104,000 petitions urging Congress to lower prescription drug prices. The petitions were delivered to Virginia Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine Tuesday, just months after pharmaceutical companies raised the prices of 800 prescription drugs.

The American health care company GoodRx reports the average cost of prescription drugs has risen by about 2.5% since the pandemic began.

David DeBiasi, associate state director of advocacy for AARP Virginia, said the cost of prescription drugs has significantly outpaced the average inflation rate in recent years.

"If consumer prices had risen as fast as drug prices had over the last 15 years, a gallon of gas would now cost over $12 and a gallon of milk would be over $13," DeBiasi emphasized.

Pharmaceutical companies argued the high costs support research and development on new prescription drugs, but DeBiasi pointed out America's tax dollars actually fund a significant amount of such work.

A 2020 report from the Institute for New Economic Thinking found taxpayer dollars went into every new drug approved by federal regulators between 2010 and 2019, and the National Institutes of Health spent $230 billion to support drug development during the same time period.

Polling by AARP and the Kaiser Family Foundation found both Republican and Democratic voters supported allowing the feds to negotiate prescription-drug costs. A measure to do so passed the U.S. House of Representatives last November, but hit a roadblock in the Senate.

DeBiasi noted high drug costs disproportionately impact seniors who typically take multiple drugs to maintain their health.

"We're hearing from them every day that they've got to figure out how to pay for their medicines," DeBiasi reported. "It's too high, we're paying three times the cost of what other industrial nations are paying for the same drugs."

Last week, the House passed bipartisan legislation to cap out-of-pocket costs for insulin at $35 per month. The New York Times reports the proposal's future in the Senate is murky, as Democrats have not been able to gather the 10 Republican votes necessary to get the bill through a filibuster in the evenly-split chamber.

Disclosure: AARP Virginia contributes to our fund for reporting on Budget Policy and Priorities, Health Issues, Hunger/Food/Nutrition, and Senior Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
more stories
Montana has more than 30 million acres of state and federal lands, nearly one third of the state. Conservation advocates are holding a photo contest featuring people and their dogs to celebrate being outdoors. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

play sound

This is the last weekend to get involved in a photo competition designed to encourage Montanans to explore the wilderness with their pets. There …


play sound

In a new poll, about a quarter of Hispanic students in post-high school education and training programs report feeling discriminated against…

Social Issues

play sound

New Yorkers are preparing for an impending government shutdown. State officials are worried about how it could impact the work state agencies have …


In 1920, Black people made up 14% of all farmers. It is estimated Black farmers lost around $326 billion worth of land within the 20th century. BIPOC farmers now make up less than 5% of all U.S. farmers. (Heather Craig/Adobe Stock)

Environment

play sound

Advocates are drawing attention to systemic racism in farming across North Carolina and the nation. The National Farm Worker Ministry is hosting its …

Environment

play sound

Researchers have found the amount of land affected by saltwater intrusion on the Delmarva Peninsula has dramatically increased in recent years…

Groups trying to prevent bullying say simple things such as sparking conversations in the classroom about each student's favorite TV show can help establish inclusiveness. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

play sound

This weekend marks the kickoff of National Bullying Prevention Month. Those raising awareness hope schools in South Dakota and elsewhere work toward …

Environment

play sound

The arrival of fall has farmers transitioning to the harvest season, but what if some gathered their crops with rows of solar panels right alongside …

Environment

play sound

A new report finds more than half of the sewage facilities in Idaho had pollution violations in 2022. The sixth annual analysis by the Idaho …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021