For Immediate Release
February 8, 2021
Contact: Trisha Harms, 612-210-0819
State Rx Affordability Survey reveals Minnesotans are worried about high prescription drug costs, united in calling for government action.
(St. Paul, MN) – A new survey released by Altarum Health Care Value Hub reveals that nearly half of Minnesotans are worried about affording high prescription drug costs, and residents overwhelmingly support government solutions.
The survey of 1,077 Minnesota adults, conducted from Oct. 30, 2020 to Nov. 27, 2020, found that residents are concerned about prescription drug costs and express a strong desire to enact solutions.
Almost half of all survey respondents (45%) reported being either “somewhat worried” or “very worried” about affording the cost of prescription drugs.
Many Minnesotans experienced hardship in the prior year due to high prescription drug prices. 1 in 5 Minnesota adults (21%) went without a refill, cut pills in half, or skipped a dose of medicine because of cost concerns.
“On top of concerns about COVID-19, Minnesotans across the state are worried about how they’re going to afford prescription drugs they need to be healthy and stay alive,” said Kenza Hadj-Moussa, a spokesperson for TakeAction Minnesota. “No one should have to choose between their medication or paying rent, or figuring out how to manage symptoms until they can afford a refill.”
Hardships like these have a disproportionate impact on lower income families. Households making less than $50,000 per year are three times as likely to have rationed their prescription medicines as households making more than $100,000 per year.
To take on high drug costs, the survey found that Minnesotans are united calling for government action. Respondents enthusiastically endorsed a number of government solutions, including:
- 89%—Set standard prices for drugs to make them affordable
- 88%—Authorize the Attorney General to take legal action to prevent price gouging or unfair prescription drug price hikes
- 87%—Create a Prescription Drug Affordability Board to examine the evidence and establish acceptable costs for drugs
Altarum’s Consumer Healthcare Experience State Survey (CHESS) is designed to elicit respondents’ unbiased views on a wide range of health system issues, including confidence using the health system, financial burden and views on fixes that might be needed.
“House Democrats are determined to help workers and families afford the medication they need to live healthy, productive lives,” said Majority Leader Ryan Winkler. “Minnesotans are asking their state lawmakers to hold the pharmaceutical industry accountable for its profiteering at the expense of human lives. This legislature can choose to help Minnesotans pay for their health care costs, or it can help the rich and well-connected amass more wealth and profits.”
A range of bills are being considered at the Minnesota Legislature to rein in drug costs, create a MinnesotaCare Public Option, and expand health care coverage to undocumented Minnesotans.
TakeAction Minnesota is a statewide, multiracial grassroots organization advancing justice and equity through organizing, policy, and campaigns. Offices are located in St. Paul, Duluth, and St. Cloud.