White House intensifies resistance against ACA

by jerry on March 28, 2019
This week's top headline in US health policy appears to be that the current White House administration has announced that it backs the court's ruling to nullify the entirety of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), whereas previously, it suggested that some parts could be left intact, even while it challenges certain core pieces. Some are taking this announcement to mean that the administration wishes to roll back protection for patients who have pre-existing conditions, although the president has since indicated support for those protections. The New York Times reported on some of the politics of the decision. Notably, Democrats are seizing upon the moment to further amplify the importance of protecting the Affordable Care Act. Perhaps not surprisingly (given the popularity of covering patients with pre-existing conditions and how narrow some of last year's midterm elections were), some Republican politicians have dissented with the White House's announcement.

The same article noted some interesting legislation approved by a House subcommittee: prohibiting "pay for delay" (where name-brand pharmaceutical manufacturers pay a generic manufacturer for delaying selling a competitive product) and requiring that pharmaceutical manufacturers supply samples to generic manufacturers so the generic manufacturers have an easier time running clinical trials to demonstrate therapeutic equivalence. If passed, such legislation could have a meaningful impact on people's ability to afford medications.