Trending News Today: FDA to Play Significant Role in Wake of Right-to-Try Law

Top news of the day from across the health care landscape.

Some of the sickest patients in Medicare could see a significant increase in out-of-pocket costs under a recently-announced proposal by President Donald Trump to address drug pricing, according to a report in The New York Times. During a ceremony at the White House last month, Trump said the plan would increase competition in the market by bolstering negotiating powers under Medicare. However, the article notes that experts fear the plan could significantly increase out-of-pocket costs by switching some expensive drugs from Medicare Part B to Part D, the outpatient drug benefit approved by Congress in 2003, according to the article.

Following last week’s approval of the Right-to-Try law, FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said the agency will still play a role in determining whether certain terminally ill patients can receive unproven drugs, despite the new law weakening the control of the FDA in these cases, according to The Wall Street Journal. The legislation allows terminally ill patients to access unapproved, novel treatments outside of standard clinical trials without FDA approval, as long as manufacturers are willing to provide them, the WSJ reports.

Several states have taken action to protect certain aspects of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), according a report in The Hill. States such as California and Maryland are exploring placing limits on short-term insurance plans over fears these plans could cause ACA premiums to spike. The Trump administration is seeking to expand access to short-term insurance nationwide, according to the article. Meanwhile, states such as New Jersey and Vermont passed laws that preserve the individual insurance mandate, which was recently repealed on the federal level.