DMI Blog

Andrea Batista Schlesinger

Dear Secretary Leave-it-alone Leavitt - It’s not so hard to make prescription drugs more affordable.

With all of this talk about the new Congress' commitment to reducing the cost of prescription drugs for Medicare beneficiaries by using good ole fashioned leverage and negotiation, and the Bush administration's unsurprising resistance, we thought there might be interest in hearing from someone who has actually done it.

As part of DMI's Marketplace of Ideas, we'll hear from Maine State Senator Sharon Treat. Senator Sharon Anglin Treat established Maine's 2003 Rx Plus prescription drug program, which reduces the price of pharmaceuticals by as much as half for low- and middle-income Maine residents. The program uses the buying power of the state's Medicaid program to penalize drug companies that refuse to offer discounts to Rx Plus participants. The law went into effect in 2004 after surviving a legal challenge from the pharmaceutical industry. Nine states, from Hawaii to Michigan have passed legislation similar to Maine's. After serving 14 years in the Maine State Legislature, Sharon Treat became Executive Director of the National Legislative Association on Prescription Drug Prices, a nonpartisan organization of state legislators working to reduce prescription drug prices and expand access.

Monday December 11, 2006 8:00 - 10:00 a.m.
The Harvard Club 27 West 44th Street (between 5th and 6th Avenues)
Space is limited. Admission is free.
Please RSVP to or to 212-909-9663.

DMI’s Marketplace of Ideas series highlights policymakers from across the country who have successfully put progressive values into practice. Each discussion provides ideas to inspire better policy; in total, the series is an archive demonstrating the power of government to play a positive role in people's lives.

If you haven't already, check out the Marketplace archive.

Andrea Batista Schlesinger: Author Bio | Other Posts
Posted at 10:15 AM, Nov 13, 2006 in Drum Major Institute | Health Care
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