Drug Pricing Transparency Bill Passes out of the Senate

June 1, 2016

SB 1010 Now Heads to the Assembly

SACRAMENTO – Today the California State Senate approved passage of Senate Bill 1010, to provide transparency in drug pricing.

Authored by Senator Ed Hernandez, O.D. (West Covina) and approved by a bipartisan vote of 24-8, SB 1010 provides information on drug prices, a first step towards more affordable and accessible prescription drugs for Californians.

“I am proud that my colleagues came together to support transparency and affordability in the healthcare system,” said Senator Hernandez. “California has been a leader in providing access to healthcare, so now it’s time to shine a light and bring drug pricing out of the shadows.”

Sponsored by the California Labor Federation and Health Access California, SB 1010 requires drug makers to give prior notice to purchasers before raising prices and requires health plans to report the proportion of the insurance premiums that is spent on prescription drugs.

“Far too often, working people are forced to make impossible decisions about whether to feed their families or pay for the prescription drugs they need to stay healthy,” said California Labor Federation Executive Secretary-Treasurer Art Pulaski. “SB 1010 provides a much-needed measure of transparency to prescription drug pricing. We’re proud to support this critical legislation and look forward to its passage in the Assembly.”

The pharmaceutical industry is the only major sector of the healthcare system that doesn’t have these types of transparency requirements. Other sectors of the healthcare system are required to be open with cost drivers in order to help control cost increases.

“The big pharmaceutical companies shouldn’t be able to raise prices on a whim without any warning or telling anyone why. Without more transparency, drug prices will just continue to go up, causing patients not to be able to afford their medications, and making health care system prohibitively expensive for all of us,” said Anthony Wright, executive director of Health Access California, the statewide health care consumer advocacy coalition.

SB 1010 now heads to the Assembly. For more information on SB 1010, please visit http://sd22.senate.ca.gov/sb1010.

To view what others are saying on the passage of SB 1010, please click here