Trump's pick to lead Medicare won't say if she supports negotiating prices with drug companies

Trump's pick to lead Medicare won't say if she supports negotiating prices with drug companies
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Seema Verma, President Trump's pick to lead the Center for Medicaid & Medicare Services, dodged questions Thursday about whether she supports the federal government negotiating drug prices for its public health programs. 

During her confirmation hearing before the Senate Finance Committee, Verma said increased competition could lower drug prices for seniors but did not say she supports allowing the federal government to negotiate with drug companies. 

"I think that competition is the key to getting good prices," Verma told Sen. Debbie StabenowDeborah (Debbie) Ann StabenowDemocratic proposals to overhaul health care: A 2020 primer We can accelerate a cure for Alzheimer's Bipartisan senators offer bill to expand electric vehicle tax credit MORE (D-Mich.). 

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Pressed on whether she supports negotiation, Verma said, "I don't think that's a simple yes or no answer." 

"The goal is to make sure we're getting affordable prices for our seniors," she said. 

"I think we have to figure out ways about how we can increase our competition and support the (Medicare) Part D program." 

Trump has said he supports the government negotiating directly with drug companies on prices for drugs covered by Medicare.