Skip to content

Lowering health care and prescription drug costs

Dear Friend,

I fought hard to pass the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) because I knew that it would be life-changing for New Mexico families. We are seeing this landmark bill do exactly what we intended — deliver real results for New Mexicans by lowering health care and prescription drug costs and putting money back in their pockets.

Starting this year, the IRA has begun phasing in a cap on the total out-of-pocket drug prices for seniors enrolled in Medicare Part D. In 2024, Part D beneficiaries will have a cap of $3,250, and by January 1, 2025, the IRA’s $2,000 cap on out-of-pocket costs will be in full effect, leading to substantial savings and peace of mind for more than 3o0,000 New Mexicans enrolled in Medicare Part D.

This cap will be particularly important for seniors who are being treated for leukemia, multiple myeloma, bone, lung and brain cancer, cystic fibrosis, organ transplants, and hypertension.  In 2023, before the cap was fully implemented, seniors who took any of three commonly-used cancer drugs - Lynparza, Ibrance, and Xtandi – averaged about $12,000 per year in spending on those drugs alone.  

Becerra Roundtable

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 White House recently announced 48 Medicare Part B drugs that raised their prices faster than inflation, and some drug companies raised prices of certain medications faster than inflation for every quarter over the last year. The IRA will require these companies to pay rebates back to Medicare, saving seniors who take these drugs between $1 and $2,786 per dose, depending on their medication.

These new Medicare drug cost savings come in tandem with several other major health care provisions in the law, including free vaccinations for shingles and other recommended vaccinations for seniors. Before the IRA, Medicare beneficiaries were the only patients in the country required to pay for vaccines. The IRA also set a $35 cap on out-of-pocket costs for insulin in Medicare Parts D and B. This provision has already helped lower costs for 8,700 New Mexicans.  

The IRA also reduced the cost of marketplace health insurance premiums by an average of hundreds of dollars per person, for roughly 40,000 New Mexicans. The White House announced last month that a record of more than 21 million Americans enrolled in an Affordable Care Act Health Insurance Marketplace plan during the most recent Open Enrollment Period.

With more prescription drug and health care cost savings provisions from the IRA coming online soon, we're only just getting started.


United States Senator