Tester Continues Fight to Lower Prescription Drug Costs

Tester Pushed the Food and Drug Administration on Approval and Regulation of Generic Drugs

(U.S. Senate) -Senator Jon Tester today questioned Food and Drug Administration (FDA) officials about the recent price gouging by pharmaceutical companies despite a robust generic market for commonly-used drugs like insulin.

In an Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee hearing, Tester stated it was incredibly important for families to have access to generic drugs, which have saved the United States’ health system over $1.5 trillion in the last ten years. Additionally, Tester will be submitting questions to the FDA about the length of time it takes the FDA to approve generic drugs for sale on the marketplace.

“I am hearing it from friends, family, and folks across Montana: it is harder and harder for working folks to afford their medications. Patients are emptying their pockets for drugs that used to be affordable, and for many people life-saving cures are basically out of reach,” Tester said following the hearing. “That’s not what this country stands for. No one should ever have to find themselves in a situation where their health is jeopardized because of their income.”

Tester asked regulators about what Congress can do to crack down on pharmaceutical companies who manipulate the generic market to increase profits.

As a member of the Appropriations Committee, Tester will continue to look for ways to help the FDA tackle the generic drug application backlog.

In his continued efforts to reduce the cost of prescription drugs, Tester introduced legislation holding pharmaceutical middlemen accountable and sent a letter chastising the company responsible for EpiPen price hikes.