Welch Introduces Drug Importation Amendment: “The price of prescription drugs is killing us.”
WASHINGTON – This afternoon in the House Committee on Energy and Commerce markup of the FDA Reauthorization Act of 2017 (H.R. 2430), Rep. Peter Welch (D-VT) introduced an amendment to authorize the importation of safe, low-cost medicine from Canada. A full transcript of Welch’s remarks can be found here.
In his opening remarks on the amendment, Welch decried the high cost of prescription drugs in the United States and implored the Committee to allow Americans to get their prescription drugs from Canada where prices are significantly lower.
“We have an example of EpiPen where if people buy it in Canada it’s 250 bucks; in the US it’s 600. And the pain to families—I got a letter from a Vermonter who said, ‘Mr. Welch, I have a choice between paying for something I cannot afford, or risking a loss that I could never endure.’ We pay the highest prices in the world. Now, why don’t we have consideration for that mom struggling to protect her son when there is an ability to do that?”
A vote on Rep. Welch’s amendment is expected this afternoon. It is identical to House legislation (H.R. 1245) Welch cosponsored with Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD). Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) has introduced the same bill in the U.S. Senate (S. 469).