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Committee Passes Hassan’s Bipartisan Measures to Lower Prescription Drug Costs by Increasing Generic Competition

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions voted on a bipartisan basis to pass Senator Hassan’s bipartisan measures that will increase generic drug competition, helping lower prescription drug prices for consumers. 

“Granite Staters and Americans need us to take action to lower the cost of prescription drugs, and it’s important that today we advanced bipartisan measures that I authored to increase generic competition, which can lower prescription drug prices for consumers across the board,” said Senator Hassan. “I urge my Senate colleagues to pass this bill, and I will continue working to lower prescription drug costs and hold Big Pharma accountable.”

The package has key measures to lower costs, including:

  • Senator Hassan’s amendment to get more generics into the market faster by requiring the FDA to more clearly identify the specific differences between the generic and brand name drug, thereby streamlining the approval process
  • Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT) and Hassan’s bill to prevent brand-name drug manufacturers from using last-minute labeling changes to block the entry of generic drugs
  • Senator Hassan and colleagues’ measure to require the FDA to move forward on allowing hearing aids to be sold over-the-counter
  • Bipartisan legislation that Senator Hassan and colleagues introduced to more efficiently usher drugs to the market
  • Bipartisan legislation that Senator Hassan and colleagues introduced to increase transparency in the drug market by requiring manufacturers to share information with the FDA regarding when their biologic drugs are coming off the market—giving physicians and patients critical information that they need to make treatment decisions that are best for them, including helping plan for potential drug shortages

The package includes a number of additional priorities from Senator Hassan, including:

  • The Better Options for Drug Disposal Systems to Reduce Diversion Act, which Senator introduced to make it easier to dispose of opioids and other medications
  • Senator Hassan and colleagues’ bipartisan legislation to reauthorize current research and improve public health programs for early detection, diagnosis, and treatment of hearing loss in newborns, infants, and young children for five additional years
  • Senator Hassan’s bipartisan measure to address PFAS contamination in food wrappers
  • Senator Hassan’s amendments to address the potential conflicts of interest that arose when the consulting firm McKinsey was working simultaneously for both the federal government and opioid manufacturers that fueled the substance misuse crisis
  • Measures to address the infant formula shortage