Democrats circulate a new drug pricing outline with a big carveout for small biotechs

WASHINGTON — A proposed version of drug pricing legislation circulating among Capitol Hill aides and lobbyists includes an expansive carveout for small biotechnology companies and significantly waters down a provision to let Medicare negotiate drug prices, according to a draft obtained by STAT. 

The new compromise would only allow the health secretary to negotiate the price of drugs that are manufactured by a single company that have outlasted their initial exclusivity periods granted by the Food and Drug Administration. The number of negotiation-eligible drugs would be small, too: 10 medicines beginning in 2025, with a gradual increase to 30 by 2028. Insulin products would also be eligible.

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