Responding to the Trump administration’s drug pricing proposals, the ACR released a set of principles it hopes will help guide any drug policy changes.1 The principles underscore what is critically needed for rheumatologists to provide the best and safest care to their patients, many of whom require ongoing treatment for chronic conditions.
“The ACR has prioritized this issue and has grave concerns regarding reduced patient access to care as a consequence of the administration’s drug pricing proposal,” says Colin Edgerton, MD, chair of the ACR’s Committee on Rheumatologic Care (CORC).
The principles underscore the importance of patient access to affordable, high-quality drugs. The ACR listed five key principles to ensure such access:
- Provide patients access to high-quality rheumatology treatments to control disease activity and prevent disability, permanent damage to joints and other organ systems, and early death;
- Reduce and streamline utilization management tools used in the drug distribution system, including Medicare Part D, which delay and prevent patients from accessing medicines;
- Ensure patients’ safe access to Medicare Part B treatments in monitored settings;
- Promote the use of treatment guidelines, when available, adapted for individualized treatment decisions made by doctors and patients; and
- Improve the FDA’s capacity and manufacturers’ ability to bring safe, effective biosimilars to market to maximize access to treatment by lowering costs.