AARP W. Va., Manchin speak need for lower prescription drug prices


CHARLESTON — On behalf of nearly 250,000 members in the Mountain State, AARP West Virginia delivered thousands of signed petitions to U.S. Senator Joe Manchin, calling on Congress to act now and stop unfair prescription drug prices.

AARP has called for fair drug prices for years and supports legislation that passed the House in November, which would allow Medicare to negotiate drug prices, put a cap on out-of-pocket costs that older adults pay for their prescription drugs and impose penalties on drug companies that raise prices faster than the rate of inflation.

“Americans are fed up with paying three times what people in other countries pay for the same drugs. More than four million people across the country, including 35,000 West Virginians, have signed these petitions, joining with AARP to demand lower prices for prescription drugs,” says Jane Marks, AARP West Virginia State Volunteer President. “There will never be a better time to lower drug prices than the historic opportunity in front of Congress. If the Senate does not act, it will be at the cost of older Americans and taxpayers.”

Lowering prescription drug prices has widespread support among voters, regardless of their party affiliation. An AARP survey of voters found that strong majorities of voters want Congress to act on the issue, with 70% saying it is very important. The survey also found that 87% of voters support allowing Medicare to negotiate prescription drug prices.

AARP West Virginia advocates joined Senator Manchin for today’s presentation at the Senator’s Charleston office. AARP’s Fair Rx Prices Now campaign has been fighting for three reforms that could help older Americans afford their lifesaving medications: Allow Medicare to negotiate lower prices with drugmakers; place a cap on Part D out-of-pocket costs; and levy penalties on companies that raise medication prices higher than the rate of inflation.

For more information on AARP’s advocacy work on prescription drug affordability and the Fair Rx Prices Now campaign, visit www.aarp.org/rx.

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