Trying to get doctors to choose cheaper drugs
It sounds like a benign experiment: Reduce the prices that Medicare pays for some drugs, and see if that holds down their out-of-control price increases. But many doctors argue that such Medicare cost controls might lead to worse care.
The government’s test is limited in scope, confined to a small part of the Medicare drug universe, but could have a wider impact if Washington likes the financial results. In March, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), the federal agency that oversees the government healthcare program for the elderly, announced plans to curb its outlays on drugs prescribed under Part B of Medicare. The first phase of the test could begin this summer, with the rest implemented in 2017