Intended to reduce the costs of prescription drugs, a new Maryland law took effect on July 1 with the implementation of the Prescription Drug Affordability Board, which will set maximum costs for certain medications. This is the first board of its kind in the nation.

The law marked “a major milestone in our campaign to make prescription drugs more affordable for people across Maryland,” said Vincent DeMarco, president of Maryland Citizens’ Health Initiative. “The new Prescription Drug Affordability Board will have the authority to be a strong public watchdog and will help bring down the costs of drugs. Drugs don’t work if people can’t afford them, but we want Marylanders to know that help is on the way.”

The new board will have the authority (with the approval of the Legislative Policy Committee) to set maximum costs for certain drugs purchased by the state and local governments. The measure will, in turn, help the state and local governments reduce expenditures, freeing public funds for other needs, such as education. The new five-member board will also play an important role by recommending action Maryland should take to make drugs more affordable for all Marylanders.

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