WASHINGTON (AP) – Lawmakers are venting outrage over high prescription drug costs, but if Congress is looking for culprits, it might want to look in the mirror.READ MORE: On 2nd Anniversary, Garden Will Be Unveiled At Scene Of Deadly El Paso Walmart Shooting
Republican- and Democratic-controlled Congresses, and presidents of both parties, may have set the stage for the startling prices that have consumers on edge.
In the last 13 years, Congress passed major legislation that expanded taxpayer-financed coverage for medications.READ MORE: U.S.-Mexico Border Arrests During Summer Remain At Highest Level In Decades
But the Medicare prescription benefit and President Barack Obama’s health care law lacked explicit mechanisms for dealing with drug costs, instead relying on market forces.
In the eyes of some experts, lawmakers look like unwitting enablers.
A former congressional adviser on Medicare, economist Paul Ginsburg, says that by using taxpayer dollars to expand access to prescription drugs, Congress inadvertently created a situation where price increases are more rapid.MORE NEWS: COVID-19 Booster Shot Not Yet FDA-Authorized, But Some Not Waiting
(© Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)