Kohl bill would cut federal spending on drugs

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His bill also would allow Medicare to negotiate prices for Part B drugs for which it is the majority purchaser. And it would extend the discount program known as 340B, which provides discounts to many outpatient healthcare facilities. Kohl would extend those discounts to some inpatient facilities.

“As we look to cut costs, it only makes sense to extend the kinds of discounts that are holding costs down in Medicaid to Medicare Part B,” Kohl said in a statement.

The pharmaceutical industry strongly opposes all three proposals. Keeping them off the table was a large part of the industry's motivation for striking a controversial $80 billion deal to support healthcare reform. But many Democrats have renewed their push for lower drug spending as the supercommittee looks to health programs for savings.

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