Dear Editor: President-elect Biden is making the case that returning to pre-COVID conditions is not enough to move the country in the right direction and I agree. The fact that COVID-19 has swept the country, wiping out jobs, health care and lives, has made things worse, but returning to a health care system where millions can’t get affordable coverage and millions more can’t afford prescriptions even when they have Medicare or private insurance should not be an option.
With or without COVID-19, reforms to lower drug prices are long overdue. But as we saw under the Trump administration, flashy promises and Band-Aids won’t fix the problem.
President-elect Biden and the new Congress must pass measures that will take away the drug corporations’ monopoly power to set prices and overcharge us for medicines, including COVID-19 medicines created with taxpayer money that all of us are going to need to stay healthy and protect our families.
To build back better, Biden must be willing to leave business as usual behind, leverage the power of the government to negotiate reasonable prices with the drug corporations and establish fair rules that hold them accountable for price gouging.
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