For the last 20 years, all Americans have been getting ripped off by pharmaceutical companies. The heist began when a prescription drug benefit was added for Medicare enrollees (Medicare Part D). Drug company lobbyists made sure Congress wrote the law to prohibit Medicare from negotiating drug prices.

As a result, Medicare was (and actually still is) held hostage by drug companies and Medicare pays 300% more for prescription drugs than in Europe or Canada, and close to 10x higher than in developing nations. That means every American who gets a paycheck is paying way more than necessary for prescription drugs. We’re ALL being scammed (not just Medicare beneficiaries) because Medicare is financed with a regressive payroll tax.

The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 finally included modest reform by allowing Medicare to begin negotiating the price of a handful (initially 10) of the thousands of drugs they cover in Medicare Part D.

Last week Medicare sent initial offers to manufacturers of the first 10 drugs selected for drug price negotiation to help bring down the price of these prescription drugs.  This is the first time ever that Medicare is not accepting the drug prices the pharmaceutical companies set. 

Below is the list of 10 drugs covered under Medicare Part D selected for negotiation for initial price applicability year 2026, based on total gross covered prescription drug costs under Medicare Part D and other criteria as required by the law. For example, any drug that was approved by the FDA less than 7 years ago can’t be negotiated.


Drug    Condition               Part D Cost $          # of Part D Users

Eliquis     Prevention of blood clots    $16,482,621,000         3,706,000

Jardiance Diabetes; Heart failure     $7,057,707,000           1,573,000

Xarelto    Prevention of blood clots    $6,031,393,000          1,337,000

Januvia   Diabetes                           $4,087,081,000             869,000

Farxiga   Diabetes; Heart failure        $3,268,329,000             799,000

Entresto  Heart failure                      $2,884,877,000             587,000

Enbrel    Rheumatoid arthritis            $2,791,105,000              48,000

Imbruvica Blood cancers                   $2,663,560,000              20,000

Stelara   Psoriasis; colitis                  $2,638,929,000              22,000

Fiasp      Diabetes                             $2,576,586,000            777,000

According to the HHS, the list of drugs above represents: “… the 10 drugs with the highest total Part D gross covered prescription drug costs after excluding from the ranked list of 50 negotiation eligible drugs any biologics that qualify for delayed selection as a result of there being a high likelihood that a biosimilar will enter the market within a specified time.”

The drug companies have filed several lawsuits to stop HHS from negotiating better prices. They’re hoping the courts will do what they could not get done in Congress: block Medicare from negotiating lower prices for seniors and families.

HHS Names 1st 10 Drugs Up for Negotiation Under Medicare – AZ Public Health Association (

‘Inflation Reduction Act of 2022’ Gets a C- for Cutting Prescription Drug Prices – AZ Public Health Association (

More Meaningful Prescription Drug Price Reform That Could Have Been – AZ Public Health Association (