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S4, Ep 6- Unpacking the Inflation Reduction Act: Hope and Hurdle for Patients

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In this episode of Healthcare Matters, join our hosts as they dive into the intricacies of the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA). While the act has brought about significant benefits like the annual cap on out-of-pocket costs, zeroing out costs for vaccines, and the insulin cap, it's not without its challenges. 

Join Dr. Popovian and Conner Mertens as they explore the benefits and risks associated with the IRA, offering valuable insights into how it affects patients, particularly in terms of prescription drug costs.

Among the highlights in this episode:

02:12: Dr. Popovian outlines the benefits of the IRA, such as the $2,000 annual cap on out-of-pocket costs, zero out-of-pocket costs for vaccines, and the insulin cap of $35, as well as the negative implications such as the reluctance of pharma companies to release drugs for smaller populations, possibly impacting patients with rare diseases

05:14: Conner brings up the unintended consequences of the IRA, especially its impact on research and development

05:30: Dr. Popovian foresees more step therapy, prior authorization, and potential removal of drugs from formularies as a result of the limitations the IRA imposes on insurance companies and pharmacy benefit management companies

07:21: Dr. Popovian comments on the recent list of drugs to be negotiated by CMS* and points out surprises, such as the inclusion of drugs that will lose their patent before the implementation of set prices

*CMS is the federal agency that provides health coverage through Medicare, Medicaid, the Children's Health Insurance Program, and the Health Insurance Marketplace

09:40: Dr. Popovian expresses frustration about the lack of rebates and concessions being passed to patients at the pharmacy counter

12:05: Dr. Popovian shares some final thoughts

Contact Our Hosts

Dr. Robert Popovian, Chief Science Policy Officer at GHLF: 

Conner Mertens, Patient Advocate and Community Outreach Manager at GHLF:

We want to hear what you think. Send your comments, or a video or audio clip of yourself, to 

Listen to all episodes of Healthcare Matters on our website or on your favorite podcast channel.

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