Through the Inflation Reduction Act, signed into law by President Biden yesterday, Congressional Democrats took major steps to drive down the costs of health care and prescription drugs. Today, I welcomed U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Xavier Becerra to New Mexico, where we met with health care providers in Las Cruces to discuss the new law.
Far too many New Mexicans have had to choose between filling their prescriptions and paying for other expenses like rent, food, or transportation. By passing this new law, we will make a big difference in lowering the cost of medications and saving families money.
PHOTO: From Left: U.S. Senators Ben Ray Luján and Martin Heinrich join U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Xavier Becerra and N.M. Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham for a roundtable discussion with health care providers on the measures in the Inflation Reduction Act that will lower the cost of health care and prescription drugs, August, 17, 2022.
The Inflation Reduction Act will finally empower Medicare to negotiate directly with drug companies to lower prices for seniors. It will also rein in out-of-pocket costs for New Mexico seniors—capping yearly Medicare costs to $2,000 per year. And starting next year, drug companies will be required to pay rebates if they raise their drug prices faster than the rate of inflation.
We also passed new incentives to encourage drug manufacturers and health insurers to bring down costs for all consumers. We stabilized Medicare premiums for seniors and made all vaccines free for seniors. Finally, we protected lowered premium costs for Affordable Care Act health insurance plans that more than 37,000 New Mexicans rely upon. These provisions will make a huge difference for tens of thousands of New Mexicans.
I am grateful to all the advocates who have been working for years to advance these measures that will bring down drug prices and provide long-overdue relief to seniors and families.
United States Senator