Bipartisan bill targets prescription drug costs in Wisconsin

A bipartisan proposal in the Wisconsin Legislature attempts to lower prescription drug costs and provide more information to consumers about the true cost of their medication.

The bill unveiled Tuesday targets middlemen called pharmacy benefit managers. They bargain drug prices on behalf of insurers and employers, manage plans and process claims.

The proposal would create requirements on price transparency and PBM contracts and further regulate the industry. It would prohibit gag clauses in PBM contracts that ban pharmacists from telling patients about lower-cost options.

Wisconsin would join 33 other states that have some form of regulation for the industry if the measure passes.

It’s being introduced by Republican Senate President Roger Roth, Democratic Sen. Jon Erpenbach, Democratic Rep. Deb Kolste and Republican Rep. Michael Schraa.

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