Poll: TN Voters Favor Policies that Hold P-B-M’s Accountable

In Tennessee and across the country, prescription drug prices are skyrocketing, and a new national poll found most voters want lawmakers to regulate pharmacy benefit managers who they believe are responsible for the rising costs.

Mark Blum, executive director of America’s Agenda: Health Care for All and managing director of the PBM Accountability Project, said Nashvillians, like Americans across the country, have identified the rising costs of prescription medicines as their number one healthcare concern.

“Eighty-four percent of Americans are very concerned about the effect of pharmacy benefit managers — middlemen in the prescription drug market — about their effects on driving up the costs of prescription medicines and believe PBMs need to be regulated,” Blum reported.

Blum pointed out more than 70% of Americans expect their elected leaders in Congress and in state legislatures to address the problem and enact effective regulation of pharmacy benefit managers. They indicated they would vote for representatives in the next election who do so.

The polling data revealed 82% of respondents support several specific policies to regulate pharmacy benefit managers, like requiring them to pass on discounts to patients they get from negotiating with drug manufacturers.

Blum pointed out that 80% of all drug transactions in America are processed by three pharmacy benefit managers: U.S. Express Scripts International, Optum RX, and CVS Caremark, which he said are taking advantage of consumers.

“Economists call them oligopolies that control the drug marketplace and set prices for drugs,” Blum emphasized. “Americans are realizing this and saying, this industry, which is highly unregulated, needs to be regulated now so that our drugs can be affordable; they are gouging American consumers and are driving up the costs.”

Blum added the poll showed Americans want to see effective policy reforms and legislation to prohibit pharmacy benefit managers from profiting from pill prices. He recommended Tennesseans call their members of Congress and state legislators and request lawmakers require pharmacy benefit managers to provide financial reporting as other health care entities must.

Lucky Knott

Lucky Knott

One of Southern Tennessee's most experienced and recognized news broadcasters and play-by-play sportscasters. News and Sports Director for Rooster 101.5 FM, 93.9 The Duck and Whiskey Country 105.1, and 95.9. He is currently the play-by-play voice of the Coffee County Red Raiders (31 years) on The Rooster 101.5 and can be heard M-F broadcasting our local news. Lucky has done play-by-play for 3,993 (and counting) sports events on Radio & TV. He also served four years as the Public Information Officer for the Coffee Co. Sheriff's Dept. and taught Radio/TV for six years at Grundy County High School.

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