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Prescription Drug Prices Have Increased Almost 40% Over Past Decade

A new study shows the cost of prescription drugs in the U.S. has increased nearly 40% over the past 10 years, surpassing the rate of inflation during the same time span.

 

According to drug savings company GoodRx, prices have increased 37% since 2014.

These rising costs continue to raise worries for many customers who are forced to take certain doctor-prescribed medications in order to live a normal life.

On average, an American spends $16.26 out of pocket per prescription, according to data from GoodRx data, which was first reported by CNBC.

“For most Americans, the difficulty with affordable medications isn’t over the ones that cost thousands of dollars,” Tori Marsh, director of GoodRx research, said in a published study. “It’s about affording routine drugs for chronic conditions, and finding that their insurance doesn’t cover what it used to.”

Additionally, as Americans continue to face pricier prescription costs, they also have to come to the understanding that higher copays, coinsurance, and deductibles typically follow as well, according to GoodRx.

The average deductible has nearly doubled from $917 to $1,644 over the past decade.

Furthermore, almost 54% of drugs can be covered by insurance, 50% of drugs have an insurance restriction, and 25% of Americans have at least one prescription not covered by insurance, according to GoodRx.

“It’s really kind of a threefold problem: high costs, more restrictions and more friction as well…so that’s like people navigating hurdles to access their medication,” Marsh told the New York Post.

Additionally, Marsh said that these problems for many Americans include a lack of pharmacy access, as 41 million Americans reportedly do not have proper access to a nearby pharmacy, according to GoodRx.

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The amount of medications covered by insurance from a GoodRx study of more than 3,700 Medicare Part-D plans from 2010 to 2014 fell by 19%.

“Despite various efforts by policymakers and pharmaceutical manufacturers to combat rising drug prices, the cost of medications remains a significant burden for many Americans,” Marsh said in the published study. “Legislative attempts to cap insulin prices and manufacturer programs to provide discounts on expensive therapies have not led to a substantial decrease in overall drug costs.”

During Thursday night’s debate, Biden claimed his administration “brought down the price of prescription drugs” and lowered insulin shots to $15.

However, multiple outlets fact-checked this statement and reported that Biden actually capped the cost of insulin at $35 a month under Medicare.

The White House also claimed that: “more Americans have health insurance than under any other President, and are better protected against surprise medical bills and junk fees.”

According to NBC, the Biden administration also said on Wednesday that it would impose inflation penalties on 64 prescription drugs for the third quarter of this year in order to lower costs for some senior citizens in the U.S. who are enrolled in Medicare.

Americans pay “two to three times more” on average than other countries that sell prescription drugs, according to the White House.

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