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Key senators announce new drug pricing bill

Sens. Chuck Grassley and Ron Wyden
Sens. Chuck Grassley and Ron Wyden (Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) — the incoming chair and ranking member of the Finance Committee, respectively — plan to introduce a bill cracking down on the kind of tactics Mylan used to pay lower Medicaid rebates for EpiPens.

Why it matters: This is a strong signal that there's room for the committee to work together on drug pricing issues next year.

Details: EpiPen was misclassified as a generic drug within the Medicaid drug rebate program, which resulted in Mylan paying less in rebates and causing taxpayers to overpay as much as $1.27 billion over 10 years, according to one government estimate.

  • The Grassley-Wyden bill gives HHS the explicit authority to reclassify drugs, recover incorrect rebate payments and fine companies that knowingly misclassify drugs.
  • It also requires HHS to submit reports to Congress on how its new authority has been used.