WV AARP lobbies for lower prescription drug prices; bipartisan effort underway

Politics

CHARLESTON, W. Va. (WOWK) — The state chapter of the American Association of Retired Persons, or A-A-R-P, is not mincing words. Members accuse pharmaceutical companies of price gouging and are pushing legislation that could lower drug prices. Many people make the choice of: buying food or buying medicine.

“Some of these are medications that people have to have so that they can stay alive to do whatever else it is they need to do, whether it is to raise their grandchildren, raise their own children, work, be productive,” said Jane Marks, President, AARP of West Virginia.

Right now, there are a number of bills in the House and Senate that have significant support among Republicans and Democrats to lower prices.

“People talk about the high cost of drugs. And we have legislation to cap a couple of drugs here and there – EpiPens, insulin – but again, that’s not getting to the why? Why are we seeing these price increases?” said State Sen. Ryan Weld, (R) Brooke – Majority Whip.

And it gets worse as many people are on multiple medications.

“I can tell you there are so many patients in West Virginia dealing with several chronic diseases: hypertension, diabetes, hyperlipidemia, cardiovascular disease,” said State Sen. Ron Stollings, M.D. – (D) Boone.

A-A-R-P is the sponsor of our weekend public affairs program “Inside West Virginia Politics.”

“If the prescription drug bill passes, there will be a separate state web page that will list the prices for all drugs, and explain why the drugs costs that much,” said Mark Curtis, 13 News Chief Political Reporter.

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