Biden tells Senate to pass Build Back Better bill so people can afford their medications

President Joe Biden
Photo credit Getty Images | Win McNamee/Staff

"I think it's safe to say that all of us, all of us, whatever our age, wherever we live, we can agree that prescription drugs are outrageously expensive in this country… Shame on us as a nation if we can't do better than this."

That was the sentiment shared by President Joe Biden Monday while urging Congress to pass his Build Back Better bill.

Part of the bill addresses the prices of insulin and other prescription drugs that are very necessary for some U.S. citizens, price tags which Biden called “outrageously expensive.”

Biden noted that a month’s supply of insulin, a drug needed to treat diabetes in around 1.5 million Americans, can run as high as $1,000. Biden’s bill, which has already passed the House, would set a limit of $35 per month for insulin.

The regulation would also let Medicare negotiate directly with drug manufacturers to lower prices, which is currently prohibited, and cap Medicare users’ out-of-pocket costs for some prescriptions at $2,000 a year.

When asked when Biden wants Congress to approve the measure fully, he said, “as early as we can get it… I want to get it done, no matter how long it takes.”

The bill is opposed by the pharmaceutical industry, who responded with a statement that called the proposed measure a “damaging bill jammed through a partisan process will not provide patients struggling to afford their medicines meaningful relief.”