Maryland takes an important step forward in its efforts to bring down the costs of prescription drugs on July 1st, when a state law takes effect to create a Prescription Drug Affordability Board to set maximum costs for certain expensive medications. This is the first board of its kind in the nation and establishes Maryland as a leader in making prescription drugs more affordable.
“July 1st marks a major milestone in our campaign to make prescription drugs more affordable for people across Maryland,” said Vincent DeMarco, president of Maryland Citizens’ Health Initiative. “The new Prescription Drug Affordability Board will have the authority to be a strong public watchdog and will help bring down the costs of drugs. Drugs don’t work if people can’t afford them, but we want Marylanders to know that help is on the way.”
The new board will have the authority, with the approval of the Legislative Policy Committee, to set maximum costs for certain drugs purchased by state and local governments. The measure will help state and local governments reduce expenditures on certain high-cost drugs, freeing up public funds for other needs, such as education. The new five-member board will also play an important role by recommending action Maryland should take to make drugs more affordable for all Marylanders.
At the July 1st news conference, state and local officials will join policymakers and advocates from a variety of statewide organizations to celebrate the new law and discuss how it will lead to benefits for average Marylanders. The news conference will also feature Maryland residents who will share their stories about struggling to afford the medications they need.