Drug Prices Affect Your Health Insurance Premium
It’s not just your imagination; prescription drug prices in the United States are high. In fact, when you consider the world’s 20 most popular prescription drugs, those drugs cost three times more in the United States than they do in Great Britain, six times more than they do in Brazil and 16 times more than they do in the country where they’re the most affordable.
In the United States, prescription drugs are estimated to comprise about 17% of overall personal health care services. Unsurprisingly, health insurance companies must figure high drug prices into the premiums they charge their customers.
What’s to Blame for High Drug Prices?
The high cost of prescription drugs in the United States can be blamed on the fact that our government grants protected monopolies to drug manufacturers, along with the requirement for coverage for government-funded drug benefits.
In Europe, drug costs are capped, and in some cases, costs are pushed down, meaning that drug companies actually have a reason to keep costs affordable. By contrast, the U.S. government doesn’t regulate prices the way that other countries’ governments do; in the United States, pricing is left entirely to market competition.
On top of that, generics for popular drugs hit the U.S. market more slowly than they do European markets. This means that when it comes to treating certain conditions, Americans simply have fewer prescription drug options.
The current administration has taken steps to reduce prescription drug costs by loosening the restrictions on what drugs Medicare Part D must cover, as well as speed up the process for bringing generic drugs to market. While there are some downsides to these measures, they may create more competition for drug companies and provide them with an incentive to lower prices. Furthermore, the administration put an end to the gag clauses that kept pharmacists from telling a customer if they could pay less for a drug by simply paying for it out-of-pocket rather than using their health insurance or prescription drug coverage.
High Drug Prices and High Health Insurance Prices
While the high cost of prescription drugs is just one of the many factors responsible for the high cost of healthcare in the United States, it is a factor worth noting. Although health insurance companies are aggressive in negotiating with the drug companies for lower rates, prescription drug spending in the United States still far exceeds that of other high-income nations. Because most people will rely on at least one prescription drug at some point in their lives, health insurance companies have to figure the high cost of drugs into their premiums.
Finding Affordable Health Insurance with Nevada Insurance Enrollment
You may rely on prescription drugs, but that doesn’t mean that your health insurance premiums have to be outrageously high. While the current administration has taken steps to lower drug costs, measurable change may come slowly. At Nevada Insurance Enrollment, our health insurance agents specialize in helping Nevadans find affordable coverage, regardless of their health needs.