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Biden and Senator Sanders highlight efforts to reduce the cost of asthma inhalers

By Jarrett Renshaw

(Reuters) – US president Joe Biden will co-host an event at the White House with the US Senator Bernie Sanders on Wednesday to highlight their efforts to reduce the cost of inhalers for asthma patients.

Sanders and other lawmakers in January criticized four manufacturers of inhalers sold in the U.S. — AstraZeneca, Boehringer, Teva Pharmaceuticals (TEVA.TA) and GSK (GSK.L) — over prices that were much higher in the U.S. than in others to land. .

The Biden administration has also tried to crack down on what it calls falsely claimed patents, in an effort to increase competition to lower the cost of inhalers.

In March, three out of four companies decided to cap the cost of inhalers at $35.

Asthma affects 27 million Americans, including more than four million children, the White House said in a preview of the event.

Biden has made lowering health care costs a key part of his 2024 re-election campaign.

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Biden will also highlight the successful efforts included in the Inflation Reduction Act, which imposed a $2,000 limit on Medicare prescription drugs and a separate $35 limit on insulin.

He will also use the event to expand the number of Medicare drugs the federal government can negotiate with drug companies from 10 to 50, the White House said.

Part of the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 allows Medicare to negotiate prescription drug prices that would have been particularly expensive for the federal health program that covers millions of Americans 65 and older and the disabled.

(Reporting by Jarrett Renshaw; Editing by Mary Milliken and Michael Perry)

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