At a White House ceremony, Friday, President Donald Trump signed four Executive Orders related to drug prices in the middle of a second term re-election race and sharp attacks on his mismanagement of the coronavirus crisis.
The Republican President said that the executive orders signed will completely restructure the prescription drug market in terms of pricing and everything else to make medications affordable and accessible for all Americans. In this executive decision, Trump aims:
- to federally qualified health centers to pass considerable discounts on received insulin and epinephrine to low-income patients.
- a safe importation of certain prescription drugs from authorized pharmacies in other countries.
- to prohibit the involvement of middlemen in prescription drug sales
- that the State pays the lowest price available in economically comparable countries for Medicare drugs.
The president noted that the top executives of drug companies requested a meeting to discuss their strategy on how can they possibly lower the drug prices especially the fourth executive order.
Though the intention for these executive orders may benefit low-income Americans, CEO Stephen Ubl of Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, in a press release said that the orders were a swift pushback to the industry. Now that the world is facing a pandemic, the move for them was a reckless distraction that impedes their ability to respond and face the current situation and the future. The CEO added that it jeopardizes American leadership that rewards risk-taking and innovation and threatens the hope of patients who need better treatments and cures.
Members from Congress have different thoughts on the executive orders by the President. The fact that until now no security plan has been issued to combat the spread of the virus, Texas Rep. Lloyd Doggett accused the president of recycling old proposals and delaying action "to appease his pals at Big Pharma." While Republican Representative of Iowa, Sen. Chuck Grassley sided the President for this move. He said that the executive orders include proposals he's "expressed concern" about in the past.