BOSTON — In a letter addressed today to the Joint Committee on Health Care Financing, Senator Mark C. Montigny (D-New Bedford) renewed his call for swift legislative action to curb prescription drug price gouging.

The letter, sent in anticipation of tomorrow's hearing, details the Senator's longtime efforts to reign in pharmaceutical spending despite continual industry opposition.

Montigny's bill, S712, was adopted by the Senate last session in its omnibus health care legislation. It provides increased transparency to opaque pricing practices by requiring manufacturers, pharmacy benefit managers, and insurers report data to the Center for Health Information and Analysis (CHIA) and the Health Policy Commission (HPC).

Montigny's legislation also empowers the Attorney General to investigate pricing practices and take action under state consumer protection laws to combat anticompetitive behavior and unfair methods of competition. Manufacturers, PBMs, and payers will also be required to testify under oath at the annual HPC cost trends hearing.

“While we pride ourselves on leading the national charge for health care reform, industry lobbyists have been relentless in stymieing our efforts to address crippling prescription drug prices,” Montigny stated in his letter. “Concerns emanating from corporate board rooms and perpetuated by industry lobbyists can no longer take precedence over the pressing needs of patients. We cannot afford another legislative session of inaction.”

--Sen. Montigny's Office