SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WEEK) — A group of Illinois Democrats are sponsoring a slate of bills that aim to make prescription drugs more affordable in the Land of Lincoln.
Led by state Rep. Will Guzzardi (D-Chicago) the new House Prescription Drug Affordability and Access Committee is considering several new proposals on prescription drug reform.
House Bill 1441 would allow Illinois to become a licensed wholesaler of imported drugs from Canada. House Bills 56 and 156 would require drug manufacturers to tell health insurers, providers and lawmakers when they plan to hike drug prices.
“People in Illinois are being crushed by the high cost of essential medicines,” said Guzzardi. “Far too many people are splitting pills or skipping prescriptions because they can’t afford them. And the cost to our state budget is out of control. Something must be done to curtail drug prices, and that’s what we intend to do in this committee.”
Guzzardi is also introducing House Bill 2880 to create a new tax on some prescription drugs when prices increase beyond inflation that cannot be passed onto consumers, and House Bill 3493 to create a Prescription Drug Affordability Board to regulate drug prices, similarly to how the Illinois Commerce Commission regulates electric utility rates.