Fighting to Make Prescription Drugs More Affordable

WASHINGTON – Blue Cross Blue Shield Association (BCBSA) Chief Corporate Affairs Officer Sean Robbins issued the following statement in light of President Biden’s remarks about the cost of prescription drugs during the State of The Union address: 

“Every day, millions of hardworking Americans are struggling with the skyrocketing cost of prescription drugs. We can all agree that prescription drugs improve and save lives, but what good are they if no one can afford them? 

“In the United States, nearly 20% of health insurance premiums are driven by the cost of prescription drugs—which can often make life-saving medication out of reach for consumers. And 39% of Americans are having to skip or ration their medications because of rising prescription drug costs.  

“That’s why BCBSA is advocating for common-sense, market-based solutions that help more Americans get the prescription drugs they need at prices they can afford. We will continue working with Congress and the administration to eliminate the practices that stifle competition and prevent families from accessing less costly and equally effective generic drugs and biosimilars. 

“Pharmaceutical companies could lower the cost of their drugs at any time. But we can’t wait on them to take action. In 2020, BCBSA and 20 Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) companies formed CivicaScript to bring lower-cost generic prescription medications directly to consumers. In California alone, moving to the generic version of a cancer drug has saved members an average of $170 per prescription.   

“Through another partnership with 12 BCBS companies, BCBSA formed Civica Rx which is addressing the growing challenge of diabetes by producing insulin and making it available to consumers at no more than $30 per vial.  

“Every American should have timely access to safe, effective and affordable prescription medicines when they need them. By taking action and advancing market-based solutions, BCBSA and its member BCBS companies are committed to making this vision a reality.” 

The Blue Cross Blue Shield Association is an association of 35 independent, locally operated Blue Cross and/or Blue Shield companies.