WASHINGTON (AP) – President Donald Trump is proposing to lower prescription drug costs for Medicare beneficiaries by allowing them to share in rebates that drug companies pay to insurers and other middlemen.
A senior administration official outlined the plan on condition of anonymity Thursday ahead of the release of Trump’s 2019 budget plan next week.
Pharmaceutical companies now pay rebates to insurers and pharmacy benefit managers to help their medications gain a bigger slice of the market.
Insurers apply savings from rebates to keep premiums more manageable.
Under Trump’s proposal, seniors covered by Medicare’s “Part D” prescription benefit would be able to share in the rebates for individual drugs that they purchase at the pharmacy.
The plan also expands Medicare’s “catastrophic” drug benefit so many seniors with very high costs would not face co-payments.