AARP Executive Vice President and Chief Advocacy and Engagement Officer Nancy LeaMond issued the following statement after the administration announced a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) concerning the importation of prescription drugs:
“AARP thanks President Trump and Secretary Azar for standing up to the big drug companies to disrupt the status quo and begin the process to allow for the safe importation of prescription drugs.
“Americans are fed up with paying the highest prescription drug prices in the world. We know from our research that lowering drug prices—specifically via importation—is an issue that is widely supported by Americans across parties and ideologies: 81% of Republicans, 77% of Democrats, and 85% of independents support safe importation of prescription drugs.
“The Food and Drug Administration has long had the authority to approve importation plans, but has rarely done so. Today’s announcement is an important signal that the administration agrees that lower priced drugs can be safely imported and that the FDA should use its full authority under law to help American consumers.
“Let’s be clear: there is a crisis in drug prices, and the safe, legal importation of less expensive prescription drugs is one step that will help lower costs and add competitive pressure on drug makers to lower the prices they set in the U.S.
“AARP strongly supported bipartisan legislation in Florida, Colorado, Maine, and Vermont to allow importation in those states. It is critical that the administration works closely with those states to allow those laws to take effect and to ensure that the policy makes prescription drugs both affordable and accessible to older Americans.
“AARP looks forward to seeing more details of the Action Plan and stands ready to work with the administration to allow for the safe importation of prescription drugs.”