Biden celebrates drugmakers capping inhaler costs at $35 per month

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WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) – President Joe Biden and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) touted their efforts to lower drug prices on Wednesday following an announcement that several drugmakers will cap inhaler costs.

“Finally, finally we beat big pharma,” Biden said during prepared remarks at the White House.

Starting in June, three of the four largest inhaler manufacturers will cap the cost of inhalers for patients at $35 per month. AstraZeneca, Boehringer Ingelheim and GlaxoSmithKilne made the announcement to cap costs in March.

The announcement from inhaler manufacturers comes after pressure from the Biden administration and Sen. Sanders. Earlier this year, Sanders demanded information on the costs involved in the manufacturing of inhalers from four of the biggest manufacturers.

“Despite all we have accomplished up to now, it is not enough. Much, much more needs to be done,” Sanders said.

According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), nearly 40 million Americans rely on inhalers to breath. The president noted that some inhalers can cost as much as $600 out of pocket for patients.

Kristopher Garcia, a 47-year-old from Colorado, spoke about the struggle to afford medication as someone who suffers from several health conditions, including chronic asthma.

“I’m constantly forced to split my medications or decide which medications to forego altogether because I simply can’t afford them,” Garcia said.

President Biden used Wednesday’s event to highlight his administration’s efforts to lower healthcare costs for Americans through the Inflation Reduction Act.

“I think we should be more aggressive. It’s time to negotiate lower prices for at least 50 drugs a year,” Biden said.

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