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STATEMENT: CAP Commends CMS in Taking Steps to Test New Programs to Reduce Medicare Costs

Washington, D.C. — The Center for American Progress issued the following statement on the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, or CMS, announcing a proposed rule to test Medicare payment reform for prescription drugs across the country. Last year, CAP recommended that the Medicare program use its authority to test new ways for Medicare to pay for high-priced drugs. Notes Topher Spiro, Vice President for Health Policy at CAP:

We applaud the administration’s decision to propose a prescription drug model to test new ways to pay for prescription drugs. Importantly, the agency has designed a proposal that we hope will not only fix the current financial incentive for doctors to prescribe costlier drugs—even when lower cost, equally effective drugs are available—but will also start to push back on some of the sky-high prices that drug companies charge for their products. The proposed model will help millions of Medicare beneficiaries; it would test reforms that lower or eliminate cost-sharing for the most effective drugs and link payment to positive patient outcomes. We are also pleased that the agency is considering ways to include prescription drug payment reforms in its broader efforts to move Medicare away from the fee-for-service payment system.

In September, CAP released a set of integrated reforms that challenged policymakers to enact reforms that will lower prices, improve public health, and reward drugs that benefit patients. In the report, CAP offers new policy recommendations including recommendations for how Medicare can act to lower its spending on prescription drugs by using its Innovation Center authority.

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