Trending News Today: GOP to Hold Off on Health Care Plan Until After 2020 Elections

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

Following discussions with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, President Donald Trump said a health care plan to replace the Affordable Care Act would not be released until after the 2020 elections, The New York Times reports. According to the article, McConnell cautioned Tump that the Senate would not revisit a replacement health care bill in a comprehensive way prior to 2020, which could be a hot button issue for Democrats in the leadup to the elections. “We had a good conversation yesterday afternoon and I pointed out to him the Senate Republicans’ view on dealing with comprehensive health care reform with a Democratic House of Representatives,” McConnell told reporters Tuesday, as reported by the Times.

A bipartisan effort seeks to address the problem of surprise medical bills, which can carry thousands of dollars in unexpected charges, The Wall Street Journal reports. The House Education and Labor Committee held a hearing Tuesday seeking to protect patients from these surprise bills, with a bipartisan group of senators expected to release updated draft legislation later this year to address this issue. However, hospitals and medical-specialty groups argue that the government should not be involved in dictating terms between private businesses, and that establishing rates for out-of-network bills could lead to broader rate setting, the article reported.

The top 3 manufacturers of insulin and 3 of the largest pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) will appear before the House Energy and Commerce Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee next week to discuss price increases for the drugs, The Hill reports. Legislators hope to apply pressure on manufacturers as they work to address the skyrocketing cost of insulin, with Eli Lilly, Novo Nordisk, and Sanofi controlling 99% of the world’s insulin, according to the article. The manufacturers counter that the list price of insulin is not what patients actually pay because rebates negotiated by PBMs reduce the out-of-pocket cost, according to the article.

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