Alert
Close

Last chance – give now. Before 2014 ends, help struggling seniors. Donate

HIGHLIGHTS

Close

AARP VETERAN MEMBERSHIP

Military and Veterans Discount

CONTESTS AND SWEEPS

AARP REALPAD

Introducing RealPad by AARP

AUTO BUYING PROGRAM

AARP Auto Buying Program

DRIVER SAFETY

Piggy bank on the road - AARP Driver Safety

Take the new AARP Smart Driver Course!

Download the ipad App

AARP-iPad-ePub-app

KEEP BRAIN ACTIVE!

AARP Games - Play Now!

AARP Books

Medicare for Dummies book cover

Get the answers you need, from Patricia Barry, AARP's Ask Ms. Medicare

Most Popular

Viewed

share your Thoughts

Reader stories help us fine-tune our education efforts and strengthen our calls for action on issues that matter most to you. We read and learn from every story and may use yours (with permission) to brief legislators, inspire other readers and more. Please share your story with us. Do

You've Earned a Say

The Future of Medicare: 15 Proposals You Should Know About

Pros and cons of options on the table in Washington

13. Allow Faster Market Access to Generic Versions of Biologic Drugs

Expensive biologic drugs (medications made from living organisms) are used to treat conditions like cancer, rheumatoid arthritis and multiple sclerosis. These types of drugs currently provide manufacturers with 12 years of exclusive market access before generic versions (known as biosimilars) can enter the market. This proposal would reduce the exclusivity period to seven years. Because generic medications have a lower retail cost, this would save money for Medicare and its beneficiaries.

PRO: Under the new health care law, brand-name biologic drug manufacturers are allowed to sell their products without any competition for 12 years. This period is excessive and should be shortened in order to encourage lower prices and maximize savings for consumers and Medicare. Allowing seven years of market exclusivity is more than enough time to give manufacturers a monopoly to recoup their development costs. (Avalere Health)

CON: Drug companies have raised concerns that reducing the market exclusivity period could slow the development of new biologic drugs because it will reduce the number of years that the manufacturer is able to make money from the product to recover its research and development costs. If drug companies believe they won't be able to recoup their costs, it may reduce their incentive to develop biologics that could be used to treat many of the diseases faced by Medicare enrollees. (Avalere Health)

Discounts & Benefits

From companies that meet the high standards of service and quality set by AARP.

AARP membership discount Man trying on eyeglasses at optometrists smiling

Members save up to 60% on eye exams and 30% on glasses at LensCrafters.

Grandson (8-9) whispering to grandfather, close-up

Members can save 20% on hearing aids with the AARP® Hearing Care Program provided by HearUSA.

member benefits adt companion

Members save on new installation of a ADT Companion Service® personal emergency response system.

Member Benefits

Join or renew today! AARP members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.

Rewards for Good

Your Points Balance:

Learn More

Earn points for completing free online activities designed to enrich your life.

Find more ways to earn points

Redeem your points to save on merchandise, travel, and more.

Find more ways to redeem points