Trump to allow Florida, other states to import cheaper prescription drugs

President Trump on Friday tweeted that he is going to release a proposal that aims to lower drug prices in the U.S.

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In a post, the president said he plans to allow “Florida and other states” to import prescription drugs that are cheaper than “what we have now.” Other details were not immediately available.

Trump also went after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's recently released plan to lower drug prices, accusing the Democratic party of playing "partisan politics with your drug prices."

Pelosi put out a plan to lower Medicare costs last month – which would require the program to negotiate prices for no fewer than 25 of the priciest drugs. During his candidacy, Trump indicated support for Medicare negotiations, however, earlier this month his administration deemed Pelosi’s plan “unworkable.” At the time, sources told FOX Business he was leaning toward supporting bipartisan legislation pending in the Senate, though he didn’t necessarily support all of the specifics.

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Last week during a speech at the Economic Club of New York,  Trump mentioned he planned to allow Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis to buy drugs from other countries.

“I’m OK with it, I’m going to give [the governors] an executive order because Canada and other countries sell the exact same drug from the exact same factory for sometimes 50, 60 and 70 percent less than we do,” Trump said.

Combating the cost of rising prescription drugs is a bipartisan concern – but appears to be a source of partisan conflict as the 2020 election approaches.

In the U.S., less expensive generic drugs comprise the majority of prescriptions filled, but spending on costly brand-name drugs with no alternatives has continued to drive prices higher. Total drug spending rose 2 percent in 2017, according to a report from Blue Cross Blue Shield, despite the fact that 83 percent of prescriptions filled were generic drugs.

Total prescription drug spending has risen 10 percent each year since 2010, as consumers and companies continue to spend big bucks for these medications.

Only 18 percent of prescriptions filled last year were branded drugs, but these medications accounted for 78 percent of total spending. Expensive single-source drugs with no generic alternative saw costs increase at more than double the rate of average annual drug spending.

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