Hypothetical Mean

Commentary from an Actuarial and Economic Perspective

Birth Control Costs Rise for Some College Women

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The price of birth control pills for college women is on the rise ($WSJ). Why?

As a rule, Medicaid reimbursement rules are designed to ensure that government pays attractive prices for prescription drugs, relative to the market. Summaries of the Medicaid rebate program can be found here and here (both from the CBO). Previously, low prices for contraceptives sold to college clinics were excepted from the formulas that calculated those prices. The result: drug companies gave cheap birth control pills to college clinics to get women hooked.

As part of the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005, this exception has been erased. The result: drug companies are no longer selling cheap birth control pills to college clinics.

Did someone think that this would reduce the deficit? Or did someone just want to make it more expensive for college women to get their birth control pills? Either way, this illustrates the political games that can be played with your health when the government has a large stake in healthcare delivery.  Like they do now.

 Further discussion on the WSJ blog.

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Written by Victor

August 1, 2007 at 3:24 am

Posted in Healthcare

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