Two blood thinners and a diabetes medication are the drugs most widely used by Medicare beneficiaries among a list of 10 drugs that will be subject to price negotiations between manufacturers and Medicare. The Biden administration released the long-awaited list on Tuesday, starting a process aimed at lowering drug costs for elderly adults in the U.S. The list names drugs with the highest spending for Medicare Part D, which covers prescription medications, for the period from June 1, 2022, to May 31, 2023.
‘s blood thinner Eliquis was the most widely used during that time period, with 3.7 million Medicare enrollees using it, according to a fact sheet from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, or CMS.
Eliquis, co-developed by
Pfizer, is used to prevent blood clotting and reduce the risk of stroke.
The second most used drug was Boehringer Ingelheim’s Jardiance, which lowers blood sugar for people with Type 2 diabetes. Jardiance was used by nearly 1.6 million Medicare beneficiaries during that time, according to a fact sheet. Johnson & Johnson’s blood thinner Xarelto was third, as about 1.3 million beneficiaries used the medication during that time.
Medicare Part D also spent more on those three drugs during the time period than it did on the seven other medicines on the list. CMS reported that the plan spent $16.5 Billion on Eliquis and $7 Billion on Jardiance, while $6 Billion was spent on Xarelto. Over 8,2 million people use the 10 drugs listed. Drugmakers must sign agreements by October 1 to participate in the negotiations. CMS will make an initial offer of price to manufacturers in February 2020. These companies have one month to accept the CMS’s offer or to make a counter-offer. The negotiations will conclude in August 2024. Prices agreed upon will be published on September 1, 2024. Prices will not be reduced until January 2026.