Monday, July 25, 2016

Pricey drugs overwhelm Medicare safeguard

Pricey drugs overwhelm Medicare safeguard
July 25, 2016 by Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar

A safeguard for Medicare beneficiaries has become a way for drugmakers to get paid billions of dollars for pricey medications at taxpayer expense, government numbers show.
The cost of Medicare's "catastrophic" prescription coverage jumped by 85 percent in three years, from $27.7 billion in 2013 to $51.3 billion in 2015, according to the program's number-crunching Office of the Actuary.
Out of some 2,750 drugs covered by Medicare's Part D benefit, two pills for hepatitis C infection—Harvoni and Sovaldi—accounted for nearly $7.5 billion in catastrophic drug costs in 2015.

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