Remarks by President Biden on the Biden-Harris Administration’s Do the job to Lessen Healthcare Costs

Germanna Group University
Culpeper, Virginia

12:49 P.M. EST

     THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you, Mr. President.  (Laughter.)  I could have no a lot more have accomplished that when I was 12 yrs aged than fly.  I utilized to be a stutterer.  I was frightened to death I would stand up and ta-ta — ta-ta-converse — chat like that.  And I can not inform you how a lot — how happy I am of you.  And your brother is similarly as extraordinary as you are.  He’s standing there — he’s sitting there two seats above. 

Shannon and Joshua — and, by the way, Joyful Birthday, gentleman.  He’s likely to be 13 decades old — a teen — in a pair days.  (Applause.)

I want you to know that lowering the price of prescription medication is one of the motives why I’m in this article with Abigail, your congresswoman.  And which is what I want to talk about with you now.  Reducing the charge of health care general, as well.  Decreasing the cost of prescription medicine is significant.  And giving people like yours just a tiny bit much more respiratory home makes a gigantic distinction.

Ahead of I get into that, I want to say: It is very good to be below at Germanna college.  And, by the way, Abigail, if I required to know everything about community colleges in Virginia, I go to my spouse.  (Laughter.)  She teaches comprehensive-time and has for the very last 9 many years.  She’s in the classroom now at — at a group college or university in Northern Virginia — Northern Virginia Local community Higher education.

And she suggests — she says, “You know, the solitary finest-retained secret in The usa is group schools.”  And it really is.  They are so adaptable.  They can do so much — so a lot.  And if I had extra time — which I don’t — for all of you, I’d go into what we’re likely to try out to do to improve the versatility and the funding of group faculties for persons.

But it’s fantastic to be in this article with Abigail — with Congresswoman Spanberger.

In just about every chapter of her profession — in just about every chapter, she’s always been about a person point: assistance.  Company.

I also want to thank Mark Warner and Tim Kaine, who — senators here — are superior mates and labored intently with me on so a lot of things when I was a senator and now as President and when I was Vice President.  But they essential to be in Washington these days because there’s votes in the Senate.

I also want to thank Secretary of Overall health and Human Companies Xavier Becerra for two factors.  A person, for answering my contact when I requested him to arrive and be the Secretary.  (Laughs.)  I was anxious he wouldn’t.  And how considerably he’s helped us make so a great deal progress in finding people vaccinated, getting health and fitness insurance plan, and earning far more reasonably priced health care.

Glimpse, healthcare is portion of Abigail — congresswoman — your congresswoman’s qualifications.  Back again in 2017, she saw her reps in Congress vote to repeal the Affordable Care Act.  That was a person of a lot more than 100 Republican efforts — there ended up 100 Republican attempts considering that we handed it in our last administration to repeal the Reasonably priced Care Act.

But she realized that that was the correct opposite of what central Virginia poorly required.  You needed then and you want now much more access to top quality health care that is additional reasonably priced. 

So, when I grew to become President of the United States, that is what we did.  We passed the American Rescue Program, which produced quality protection through the Reasonably priced Care Act additional economical than ever in advance of, with families saving, on regular, who have signed up — a family members, on normal — $2,400 a 12 months in their annual premiums.

Compared to very last yr, the common month to month top quality for Virginia — for Virginians has long gone down extra than 25 percent.

Above 5 million people today have attained coverage by means of the ACA considering the fact that I turned President.  As was stated by Xavier, over 300,000 Virginians have signed up for wellness coverage for the duration of open enrollment period right here in Virginia.

And we want to go further more: lowering prescription drug prices get a cap on the amount of money men and women spend on Medicare, pay back for prescription medicine and to deliver much more clarity and much less surprises when you get your expenditures if you have been hospitalized.

So, allow me say a several terms about each of these factors now.

With regard to prescription medication: In The united states, we pay the optimum prescription drug costs of any country — produced nation in the world — the optimum of any.  And it is about two to a few periods larger than what other international locations fork out.

Enable me give you one example.  An anti-cancer drug to treat leukemia and lymphoma fees $14,000 a month in the United States.  The exact same correct drug, built by the identical specific pharmaceutical enterprise, is bought in France and it’s $6,000 a month.  $6,000 for the exact same specific drug, similar specific manufacturer, identical exact amounts.  Not 14, but 6.  Which is for a month’s supply. 

Right now, just one in four People in america who require prescription medicines battle to manage them — one particular in 4.  Practically 30 percent have skipped doses of vital medications they’re intended to take.  Many others have only not loaded prescriptions that the medical professional experienced specified them tried out to use about-the-counter medicines or drugs cut in half due to the fact they just cannot manage the cost of their prescription.

This is the United States of The us, for God’s sake.  That is just erroneous.  It’s simply just wrong, specifically since it doesn’t price tag the drug providers almost, approximately, virtually, nearly as much to make the drug or the study that went into them.

Permit me regress for just a minute right here.  I begun when — in the Obama-Biden administration an exertion to offer with the Most cancers Moonshot to alter the way in which we offer with cancer.  And I’m reinstituting that in my administration now.

And it was appealing.  I met — we experienced these hearings all about the United States.  And a single of the big situations we did, we — at Howard University, where by there were 35 other activities heading on at the same time with this.  I experienced subsequently fulfilled with the heads of — I imagine it was 13 drug companies.

And I requested them — I reported, “If you located a cure for a certain cancer, how much you assume you should be capable to charge?”  And the reaction universally was, “What the industry will bear.”

I claimed, “Hope I really do not get elected President, for the reason that which is just not — what you are going to get ought to be handled much more like a utility.”  You should be in a position to make a sizeable development for — let us add up how a great deal — and like they do in Germany — how considerably did it cost you all, the exploration and improvement — all the effort and hard work.  Add it all up.  And then, on best of that, add a substantial quality for it — a gain of 20 to 30 percent above that.  Probably, in some conditions, a lot more.

But the notion — the thought you can demand regardless of what you want is just not likely to come about in the United States of America if I have something to do with it.

If you imagine this does not have an affect on you, it does, by the way.  Everybody has fewer revenue in their pockets these days mainly because of substantial drug pric- — drug expenses and health insurance policy.  And it’s far more high priced for everybody.

And the reason it is, is this is what your coverage corporations spend.  Every single — all of you who have insurance policy, you’re spending a heck of a large amount a lot more even if you’re not applying the medications.

Above the earlier ten years, health care prices have gone up 50 p.c.  Prescription medicine are a huge chunk of that.

And there is a whole lot of factors that almost each American can agree on.  But I believe it is risk-free to say that all of us — whichever our track record, our age, in which we reside, no matter if we concur on prescription medications — seem, we all accept they are outrageously high priced, and in many situations, there is no romantic relationship to cost.

It doesn’t require to be that way.

Josh and Shannon, it fees drug businesses fewer than $10 to make a vial of that insulin.  A lot less than 10 bucks.  Which is what it expenditures.

There is no explanation you really should be shelling out about $300 a vial for medication you will need each individual working day to stay healthier and, in several circumstances, continue to be alive.

As your mother reported, you bought to pay out $5,600 for prescriptions prior to your insurance coverage even kicks in.  You obtained to do the deductible.

Shannon, you must have peace of mind of realizing that if Joshua grows up and leaves your care — your healthcare plan, he’ll be ready to pick a job without the need of ever obtaining to make a alternative involving which one particular has the specific healthcare coverage.

You know, we’re now in a placement wherever we can cap co-pays for insulin at $35 a thirty day period.  And it’s continue to a staggering gain: three and half times what it costs to make the drug.

You can do that with a stroke of a — we can do that with a stroke of a pen.

In my Make Back again Better laws that with Abigail’s leadership handed in the Home of Representatives, we can do that.  Now we just have to get by way of the United States Senate, and we’re near.

We can do even more to lower out-of-pocket prescription expenses. 

Less than my proposal, we will hold drug corporations accountable for the absurd cost improves.  Here’s how: Drug organizations that raise their prices more rapidly than the fee of inflation, at the time the price tag is established, will facial area a steep tax.

This will help us stop the times when drug businesses could enhance their prices with no oversight, no accountability, and no obligation.

We’re stating to drug companies: You are at last likely to turn out to be accountable when you elevate rates on the American persons.  Accountability.

You are nevertheless heading to make a significant financial gain.

And we can just take further methods to reduced drug charges for men and women with Medicare — a little something Abigail has championed.

Correct now, the only detail Medicare is not authorized to negotiate the selling price of are prescription prescription drugs.

For almost everything else coated by Medicare — a doctor’s visits — they negotiate and say, “We’ll pay out no far more than this significantly for a doctor’s go to.”  So if the medical practitioners never want to acquire any Medicare patients, they never have to.  But if they have a Medicare affected person, which there are thousands and thousands of them, they are not able to cost more than a specific total.  Crutches — we restrict the amount of money they can fork out for crutches. 

But — but Medicare can negotiate every thing except drug rates.  The only outfit that just cannot do — they — they cannot deal with. 

My approach is heading to enable Medicare to negotiate the charges they’re ready to pay out for each unique drug. 

If the enterprise says, “I’m not going to — I’m not going to provide it to you at that price,” good, but they are heading to reduce hundreds of thousands of clients.  Millions of consumers.  

We’re proposing — what we’re proposing is that we negotiate good price ranges — a person that displays the charge of research and growth and the will need for substantial earnings, but nonetheless is economical and has some partnership to the cost the drug organization experienced.

My strategy also caps the amount that seniors on Medicare have to invest on prescription drugs every single yr total, so that if they are on Medicare, they’ll not have to devote out of pocket a lot more than $2,000 a 12 months, no make any difference how many medication they’re getting, with drug organizations, coverage companies, and drugs — and Medicare choosing up the rest of the charge.

And just past thirty day period, to convey better transparency to health care prices, my administration outlawed shock billing.

I’ve had major experience with hospital treatment.  My son Beau, who was Legal professional Basic of Delaware and a — received the Bronze Star in Iraq — and, I necessarily mean, justification me, in — in working with remaining deployed abroad for a long time, for a calendar year.  You know, he — he came back again with glioblastoma, and he died.

But you know what?  You know, the truth is that — and I — I was hospitalized a very long time.  I had, a few many years ago, a cranial aneurism, was hospitalized for a extended time. 

     And you can no longer get that surprise billings we acquired.  If your healthcare program did not deal with a individual medical doctor but you did not even know he was becoming consulted and you get an further bill for two to 5 thousand bucks — they just cannot do that any longer.  No extra surprise billing.  No extra.

Thousands and thousands of hardworking People will no for a longer time have to be concerned about surprising health-related charges.  And Abigail has been making confident that we bring the exact transparency to drug rates.

A few of a long time ago, Abigail labored to move bipartisan laws to make drug selling prices more transparent so you realized what you’re paying for.  And my administration is performing with Abigail to make absolutely sure we enforce that.

She also has been relentless in producing guaranteed the law that’s been on the guides that says pharmaceutical businesses require to provide rural clinics and neighborhood health centers with reductions on prescription medications is in fact enforced.  And we’re operating collectively on that as properly.

I have very long explained health care ought to be a appropriate, not a privilege, in this country.  This is not a parti- — diabetes, Alzheimer’s, cancer — they’re not partisan challenges.  They are not Democrat or Republican.

This is about — this is about irrespective of whether or not you and your beloved types can afford the healthcare you have to have and the medi- – and the medicines you will need to remain nutritious, due to the fact we want to relieve the burden on working people by generating every thing extra reasonably priced and accessible.

Search, once again, slight digression: Inflation is up.  It is up.  And coming from a loved ones when the rate of fuel went up, you felt it in the home, you knew what it was like, it issues. 

But the point is that, if we’re equipped to do the matters I’m speaking about right here, it’ll deliver down the prices for average families.  It’ll convey down the expenses for regular family members.  I don’t know why they preserve transferring all that, but the truth is: They hold down the costs for common people.

And, search, the actuality is that we’re in a scenario now where by, you know, you really should have peace of head.  I know foodstuff costs are up, and we’re doing work to carry them down.

As I explained, I grew up in a relatives in which the value at the pump went up, you felt it.  And I understand.  But these points are requirements.  We’re functioning to deliver down price ranges where there are not thoroughly what family members, in fact, have to fork out now.

You nonetheless have spend to for childcare.  Childcare is a price for thousands and thousands of people.  You however have to spend your prescription drug costs.  You nonetheless have to pay back for health care.

You want to reduced the charge of living for men and women?  Help them in individuals parts.

So, there is additional than 1 way for a family members, when it will come to raising their normal of residing.

I’m going to perform like the satan to provide gas costs down, which I’m likely to — I’m operating to make guaranteed that we retain strengthening the supply chains to carry the price tag of electrical power and anything else and the goods that arrive to The united states down by supporting the ports 24/7, by altering a complete vary of items that —

You know, what’s transpired with COVID — COVID has induced significant maximize in selling prices in the supply chain, because when a manufacturing facility shuts down in a further component of the world and you require that individual solution in order to complete and construct whatsoever you are doing work on, the rate goes up exponentially, like for autos.  

But in the meantime, there is a large amount we can do to give people more respiratory area.  We can do this when we lower the cost of childcare, making sure that you never shell out far more than 7 percent of a family’s profits for childcare.  That saves hundreds of bucks in family members — for family members. 

Shannon, imagine about what these designs would imply for you and your household.

We’re — now created a lot of progress on the economic climate.  Last year, far more work were made in America than in any calendar year in American history.

Unemployment has dropped a lot more than any 12 months in American heritage.

We lowered the deficit — the federal deficit, though undertaking these — both equally these matters, by $300 billion.

We lowered boy or girl poverty by just about 40 per cent in The us, a lot more than any yr in American historical past, as a consequence of the Little one Tax Credit score.

And we’re coming out at these troubles from a placement of power unmatched by any country in the world.  And I may include, and I note right here just to all of you, that this does not raise anyone’s — if you are producing significantly less $400,000, you’re not paying a one penny extra in taxes — not a single penny extra in taxes.  And it does not boost the deficit since it’s paid out for.  It is totally paid out for. 

I’ve experienced a group of big companies, from Intel to Basic Motors to Ford to — down across the board — appear to me and say they want to retain these programs going, boost company taxes to 24 percent, which they were being meant to be.  It will get compensated for.  They comprehend the internet result on the financial system is to expand it. 

We know that when we invest in ourselves, there is no limit to what we can reach with leaders like Abigail and the courageous people like Shannon and Joshua. 

All of you know listed here now that all this development we’ve made is heading to be just the commencing — just the starting.  I promise you we’re likely to do so considerably additional, and it will not — I emphasize, it will not improve the financial debt.  It will not enhance taxes on any individual making a lot less than $400,000 a yr. 

And, by the way, I’m a capitalist.  I’m a capitalist.  You need to be able to make a million or a billion pounds.  Just shell out a minimal little bit of your honest share.  That’s all. 

We have more than 53 businesses in The usa that manufactured $40 billion very last yr — did not spend a single penny in taxes.  Not a single penny.  Which is not correct.

And so, you discover that a whole lot of these organizations comprehend: To develop and be aggressive, it helps make perception just to spend a minor much more in taxes at the best close in purchase to afford this financial development we’re developing.

But bringing down the expense of healthcare, bringing down the charge of prescription drugs is an quick factor for us to do.  It can be accomplished legally with a stroke of a pen. 

We just acquired to get Abigail’s enthusiasm that she gotten it by means of in the Property of Reps to the United States Senate.  So, we could be dragging you in excess of to the Senate to spend some time.  (Laughter.)

But all kidding apart, there is so substantially we can do. 

And I want to thank the loved ones for becoming prepared to stand up here and share their story.  And, Father, stand up so every person knows who you are.  I want them to see you.  That fantastic-seeking male again there, that’s Dad.  (Applause.)

Each time I’d wander out of my grandpop’s home up in Scranton, Pennsylvania — his identify was Ambrose Finnegan he was an All-American soccer participant out in Santa Clara when he was a child — and he applied to normally yell, “Joey, keep the faith.”  And my grandmother would yell — she’d yell again, “No, Joey, distribute it.”  Let’s unfold the religion and get this accomplished.

Thank you very, incredibly a lot.  Respect it.  (Applause.) 

1:09 P.M. EST