ELLICOTT CITY, MD – Howard County Executive Calvin Ball addressed concerns over rising prescription drug prices today at a public forum hosted by the Maryland Health Care Coalition for All. The Howard County listening session is the first of ten forums scheduled around the state. Pictures from the event can be found here.
We're honored to be the first jurisdiction to host these important conversations held around the state. While we have already made progress building a healthier and stronger community, with access to quality care, we can and will do better. Our hope is these forums will highlight the incredible burden of rising drug costs and inspire continuous action from the Prescription Drug Affordability Board.
Ball joined the Maryland Health Care Coalition shortly after taking office in 2019. That same year, the Maryland General Assembly established the Prescription Drug Affordability Board- the first of its kind in the nation. The Board has the authority to examine the high cost of prescription drugs and make suggestions on how to make prices more affordable for Marylanders.
The Maryland Health Care For All Coalition commends County Executive Calvin Ball for his great leadership on making high-cost drugs more affordable for Marylanders. The Prescription Drug Affordability Board has made excellent progress in finding ways to bring down drug costs for state and local government, which will produce significant savings for taxpayers. Now, it’s time to give the PDAB the authority to use its upper payment limit authority to make high-drug costs more affordable for all Marylanders.
Board members, key stakeholders and local leaders shared updates on any federal actions regarding prescription drug prices. Audience members also got a chance to ask questions to speakers, as well as provide input during roundtable breakout sessions.
"The Board has been working hard, and we’re excited to meet with the public to update the community about the progress we’ve made,” said Board Executive Director Andrew York.
“This is a key time for the Board as it begins implementing programs to reduce drug costs. The specific details from the public in these forum sessions will be extremely valuable in this," said Jim Gutman, a member of Executive Council of AARP Maryland and a member of the PDAB Stakeholder Council representing the public.
Howard County is only one of four jurisdictions in the nation to receive the prestigious Robert Wood Johnson Culture of Health recognition in 2021. The award goes to innovative communities that advance health, opportunity and equity. Additionally, Howard County has ranked in the Top 10 Healthiest Counties in the nation in 2021 according to rankings by U.S. News and World Report.
Anyone in need of assistance with their medications should call 211. They can get assistance with medication discounts, financial help for prescriptions or existing patent assistance programs.