Is It Possible To Fight The Rising Cost Of Prescription Medicine?
Yes, it's possible. Here are five ways to do it in your business.
Prescription drug prices have skyrocketed in recent years, and many people are struggling to afford the medications they need. The high cost of prescription drugs has serious consequences, with many individuals unable to take their medications as prescribed due to financial constraints. This can lead to a decline in health, decreased productivity, and increased healthcare costs in the long run.
The prices of prescription drugs commonly used by older Americans increased at nearly four times the rate of inflation between 2006 and 2019
To put the issue of prescription drug prices into perspective, a 2021 report by the AARP found that the prices of prescription drugs commonly used by older Americans increased at nearly four times the rate of inflation between 2006 and 2019. Additionally, a survey conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation in 2019 found that one in four Americans have difficulty affording their prescription drugs, with 29% of those individuals reporting that they had not filled a prescription due to the high cost.
The consequences of not taking medications as prescribed can be severe. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that medication non-adherence results in 125,000 deaths and at least $100 billion in healthcare costs each year in the United States. Non-adherence can also lead to complications and exacerbation of chronic conditions, ultimately leading to higher healthcare costs in the long run.
Ways To Fight Back
One way to reduce the cost of prescription drugs for businesses is to advocate for policies that increase competition in the market. Currently, there are limited options for generic versions of certain drugs due to patent laws and other regulations. By encouraging policies that make it easier for generic drug companies to enter the market, businesses can benefit from lower drug prices and increased competition.
An alternative solution is to promote the use of generic drugs over brand-name medications. Generic drugs are typically much cheaper than their brand-name counterparts and are just as effective. By encouraging the use of generics, businesses can help lower costs for both them and their employees.
Another approach is to promote transparency in the pricing of prescription drugs. Many drug companies use complex pricing structures that make it difficult for businesses and consumers to understand the true cost of medications. In situations where generic equivalents are not available, requiring drug companies to disclose the true cost of medications and the factors that contribute to pricing, businesses can make more informed decisions about which drugs to cover and how much to charge for them.
Other solutions that can be implemented to reduce the cost of prescription drugs include increasing access to telemedicine services and other digital health technologies. These technologies can help individuals manage their chronic conditions and connect with healthcare providers remotely, reducing the need for in-person visits and potentially expensive medications.
Finally, businesses can work with their employees to ensure that they are informed and educated about their prescription drug benefits. This can include providing information about generic alternatives, assistance in navigating the complex world of drug pricing and purchasing, and advocating for more transparent pricing and reimbursement practices.
A Multifaceted Approach
Ultimately, the high cost of prescription drugs is a complex issue that requires a multifaceted approach.
By working together and exploring new solutions, businesses can make a difference in reducing the financial burden on individuals and families while also improving healthcare outcomes. Businesses can explore innovative payment models for prescription drugs, such as value-based pricing. Under this model, drugs are priced based on the value they provide to patients rather than the cost of production. This approach can incentivize drug companies to develop drugs that provide real value to patients while also reducing overall healthcare costs.
By advocating for policies that promote competition and transparency, and exploring new payment models, businesses can help reduce the financial burden on individuals and families while also improving overall healthcare outcomes. In addition to the approaches mentioned above, businesses can also consider implementing programs that provide financial assistance to employees for prescription drugs, negotiating directly with drug companies for lower prices, and investing in employee wellness programs to prevent the need for expensive medications in the first place.
Overall, the high cost of prescription drugs is a pressing concern with serious consequences. But by working together and advocating for change, businesses can make a difference in reducing costs and improving access to the medications individuals need to stay healthy.
K2 Advisors Group