On Tuesday September 13, the AMHP team was honored to join the Biden Administration, members of congress, and fellow advocates at the White House to celebrate the passage of one of the most important legislative feats in decades, the Inflation Reduction Act. This transformational law addresses rising costs and climate change through wide-ranging legislation that includes several provisions designed to lower health care costs, representing a significant win for advancing public health in the US.
For years, AMHP has been advocating for policies that improve the affordability and accessibility of healthcare for all Americans, especially the most vulnerable, and calling on the very provisions that have now passed. As such, we mark this moment with gratitude and reflection.
No one should have to choose between the cost of food and medication, especially the elderly. The law will lower medication costs for Medicare beneficiaries by allowing Medicare to negotiate the price of high-cost drugs with manufacturers. Individuals with Medicare Part D will have the peace of mind knowing their costs at the pharmacy are capped at $2,000 per year, directly benefiting about 1.4 million beneficiaries. The 3.3 million Medicare beneficiaries with diabetes will also benefit from a guarantee that their insulin costs are capped at $35 for a month’s supply.
With the rising cost of living, the affordability of health insurance premiums is a concern, especially for individuals and families purchasing their own coverage. The passing of the IRA will help millions avoid premium increases by extending subsidies granted by the American Rescue Plan for three more years. With this law, 13 million Americans will continue to save an average of $800 per year on health insurance premiums, and 3 million more Americans will have health insurance than without the law.
In attending this event, we not only celebrate this historic moment, but we also recognize that much work still remains to be done. We renew our commitment to continue working with our community partners and our nation’s leaders and policy makers to build on this monumental achievement, to ensure the health and wellbeing of all.
Dr. Ghada Khan MPH, DrPH