A bill setting up this board passed the 2019 General Assembly.
Baltimore, Md (KM) It’s now part of the laws of Maryland. Legislation setting up the Prescription Drug Affordability Board officially became law on July 1st, 2019. The board will have the authority, with the approval of the Legislative Policy Committee, . to set maximum costs for certain drugs. “At first, the board will only be able to act to keep prescription drug from being too high for county and state governments,” says Vinny DeMarco, the President of the Maryland Citizens Health Initiative.
But DeMarco says the board will eventually have the authority to set prescription drug prices for all Marylanders. “The Board is required to present to the Legislature a plan to make prescription drugs for affordable for everyone And we hope that will happen in 2023,” he says.
The Legislation passed the 2019 Maryland General Assembly. The Governor let it become law without his signature.
Right now, there are no board members as of yet. “But over the next few weeks, we hope the Governor, Senate President, the Speaker and the Attorney General will pick the people for the board,” says DeMarco. The Board is supposed to contain five members.
He also says it may be a while before prices citizens pay for their prescription drugs will come down. “This is a very difficult problem. No other state has even done anything to address prescription drug prices the way we have. It’s going to take a while, but we’re moving in that direction,” he says.
By Kevin McManus