FDAnews Drug Daily Bulletin
Pharmaceuticals / Regulatory Affairs

Trump Signs Legislation Banning Gag Orders for Pharmacists

Oct. 19, 2018

President Trump signed two bills into law barring pharmacy benefit managers and insurers from placing gag clauses in their contracts with pharmacies that prohibit them from alerting consumers to less expensive drug options.

The Patient Right to Know Drug Prices Act (S. 2554), sponsored by Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), makes it illegal for health insurers and PBMs to block pharmacists from telling patients when out-of-pocket alternatives would be cheaper than going through insurance.

A companion bill, the Know the Lowest Price Act (S. 2553), sponsored by Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), prohibits sponsors of Medicare prescription drug plans and Medicare Advantage organizations from restricting or penalizing pharmacies for informing customers about lower-cost choices.

At the signing ceremony, HHS Secretary Alex Azar called the measures “the tip of the iceberg,” adding that “in the weeks and months ahead, we have got so much more coming in terms of regulatory action to bring down the price of drugs.”

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