Health care is an expensive business.
With so much competition and limited supply, it’s not easy to find the right medicine for everyone.
And that’s why the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has a new tool it wants to use to try to limit health care inflation: the Medicare Drug Price Index (MDPI).
It’s designed to make sure that drug prices keep up with inflation, and that consumers have enough money to cover medical expenses.
The index is meant to be a benchmark against which consumers can compare drugs and medical products, and it’s a major driver of health care spending, which is projected to nearly triple over the next decade.
That’s why it’s so important for the federal health care system to have a comprehensive drug price index, said Dr. Kevin T. Lynch, a Harvard University professor of medicine and director of the Medicare and health economics program at the National Institutes of Health.
“It’s really crucial to the long-term health of the American people,” Lynch said.
Medicare has long been a leader in drug prices, but the new system would be a big step forward.
The MDPI is based on data from private insurance companies, which provide coverage to about 13 million people.
It tracks how much money insurers and pharmaceutical companies pay for each drug and other medical products.
It then combines that data with information from other sources, including government data, to produce the average prices of drugs across the country.
To ensure the drug prices kept up with the cost of medicines, CMS will make the index more transparent and allow consumers to compare drugs.
CMS said the new MDPIs will be available by mid-year, but will be released online later in 2016.
The new system will require drugmakers to provide a detailed list of every drug they’ve produced for Medicare under the previous system, which had a much lower number of drugs than the new index.
The average cost of every new drug will be listed, along with the average price of all other drugs produced in the last year.
CMS also plans to increase the number of generic drugs that can be approved for use in the U.S. by about 50 percent, from 1.6 million to 2.4 million.
Generic drugs that were approved in the previous year will be allowed to be offered through the MDPi.
It will be the first time in decades that generic drugs will be offered on the MDRI.
The program will also help the health care sector deal with a spike in drug costs, since generic drugs are often cheaper than brand-name drugs.
The government will require insurers to pay for the prescription drug benefit, as well as the copayment for drugs and co-pays for those who don’t use insurance.
CMS is also trying to limit the amount of time that doctors and hospitals spend on marketing their products, but that will be more difficult in the future because the government wants to make certain that doctors can offer the best possible care, Lynch said, especially for low-income patients.
To reduce costs, insurers will be required to pay only for drugs that are sold on their own websites, but insurers will also be able to negotiate prices with manufacturers to make up for lost revenue.
“The best way to manage prices is to get the best price that is reasonable,” Lynch explained.
“And that’s going to be tough to do in the next few years.”
Lynch noted that Medicare has had its share of problems.
The federal government, for instance, has struggled to keep up on the costs of treating Medicare beneficiaries who need medical care at the emergency room, because Medicare doesn’t have the money to pay the bills.
Medicare also has been unable to keep pace with the rising cost of prescription drugs, which have increased dramatically over the past decade.
It took until 2013 for Medicare to come close to paying its prescription drug costs.
The Department of Health and Human Services said the increase in the costs has been partly driven by a shortage of drug production and the growing number of patients with serious conditions that require long hospital stays.
It said the shortage of drugs has also caused a slowdown in the number and quality of new drugs approved for the market.
The department will continue to work to ensure the country can meet its Medicare prescription drug needs, said Sylvia Mathews Burwell, acting assistant secretary for drug policy and administration.
The agency is also considering making the Medicare health insurance program the same way it is now: through private plans, so people can buy plans on their health plans and buy their prescription drugs from a single source.
That would help stabilize prices and make it easier for people to shop for medicines.
The health care overhaul is already being criticized for taking away the power of Congress, which has been controlling the federal budget for more than 20 years.
Congress is considering a series of budget bills that would have allowed Medicare to run a deficit for the first five years of the reform.
That could cause