Medicare drug prices soar at nearly 10 times inflation rate

Posted at 12:50 PM, Mar 27, 2018
and last updated 2018-03-27 12:50:00-04

(CNN) - Soaring drug costs have long made it difficult for some people to get the medication they need.

 A congressional report released this week revealed the strain is especially hard on the nation's elderly.

Prescription drug prices are rising at nearly 10 times the rate of inflation, according to a new congressional report which examined the costs of the 20 most-prescribed medications for seniors over the past five years.

A chest pain reliever soared 477 percent, the highest spike during that time.

Medicare is not allowed to directly negotiate drug prices by law.

Critics said this leads to tens of billions of dollars in unnecessary government spending but supporters fear government intervention in the free market.

Industry group, Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, sharply criticized the report calling it misleading.

The group however agreed more can be done to help seniors.

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