President Biden on Friday announced new actions to cut health care costs for individuals and families, including cracking down on insurance scams, cutting down on “surprise junk fees” and reducing medical debt tied to credit cards.
“Since the beginning of his Administration, President Biden has passed historic legislation to lower health care costs for tens of millions of Americans, took on Big Pharma to finally allow Medicare to negotiate lower prescription drug prices, and took action to eliminate hidden fees in every sector of the economy. Today, the Administration is taking additional steps to continue to deliver on those promises,” the White House said in a statement.
Biden, who’s running for reelection in 2024, was scheduled to speak on the new initiatives at 3:30pm ET Friday.
His remarks were expected to build on previous initiatives to reduce health care costs, including a new report released by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) showing that nearly 19 million seniors and other Medicare Part D beneficiaries are projected to “save $400 per year on prescription drugs when President Biden’s $2,000 out-of-pocket cap goes into effect,” according to the White House’s statement.
That spending cap was agreed to as part of last year’s Inflation Reduction Act.
Republican lawmakers have criticized Biden’s policies by saying they have spurred higher prices, while the U.S. Chamber of Commerce has asserted the drug price caps are unconstitutional.
Meanwhile, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and the Treasury Department are seeking information on third-party credit cards and loans that are specifically used to pay for health care, and whether higher costs, spurred by interest rates, are discouraging some Americans from seeking needed health care services.