SUMMARY: With much attention on the public’s view on Medicare drug price negotiations, the latest KFF Tracking Poll finds large majorities support allowing the federal government to negotiate, and this support holds steady even after the public is provided the arguments being presented by parties on both sides of the legislative debate (83% total, 95% of Democrats, 82% of independents, and 71% of Republicans).

QUICK READ:

  • The February 2019 KFF Health Tracking Poll finds a majority of adults, including seniors, are in favor of many policy options aimed at curbing prescription drug costs.
  • There is majority support – across party identification – for many current policy proposals like international reference pricing and transparency in drug advertisements.
  • Both of these policy proposals are supported by large majorities of Democrats and independents, and a majority of Republicans.
  • There is also bipartisan support for allowing the federal government to negotiate with drug companies to get a lower price for people with Medicare, which covers 60 million Americans.
  • Lilly says the net price for its Humalog insulin—the price after discounts and rebates—fell to an average of $135 a patient a month in 2018, from $147 in 2014. During the same period, the product’s average list price rose 51.9% to $594 per patient monthly.
  • Lilly hasn’t raised the U.S. list price for Humalog since May 2017. U.S. sales of the drug rose 4% to $1.79 billion in 2018, which Lilly said was primarily driven by demand.
  • Dug middlemen continue to take a huge chunk of prescription drug profits.