Latino population highly impacted by high prescription costs, organization says

Latino population highly impacted by high prescription costs, organization says
Prescription drug prices (generic). (Source: Associated Press)

TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - In a recent report, an organization that advocates for the Latino population in the United States says when it comes to prescription costs, the Latino population is greatly impacted by high prices.

According to the UnidosUS Action Fund, Latinos in the U.S. are more likely to live with chronic health conditions that require prescription medicines to stay healthy, but are more likely to be uninsured.

The organization is asking leaders to implement actions in lowering prescription drug costs; limiting power to drug companies’ power in setting drug prices; and giving Medicare the power to negotiate prices for prescription medicines.

“Support for progressive measures to reform the pharmaceutical industry is extremely high among Latinos,” said Rafael Collazo, Political Director of UnidosUS Action Fund.

Collazo says both Republican and Democratic parties need to break away from protecting industry profits over the health of constituents.

And this push for lower prescription costs has also gained support from Margarida Jorge, the campaign director for Lower Drug Prices Now.

“Just as we have witnessed through 11 months of this pandemic, Latinos continue to be on the frontlines of an unequal healthcare system,” said Jorge. “Latinos are part of an oversized segment of the public that is ready for Congressional leaders to hold drug corporations accountable, and bring an end to their monopoly control of drug pricing.”

Among the report findings:

  • While the Latino population is young, demographic data show that they fall squarely into the group most vulnerable for reliance on high-cost prescriptions.
  • Latinos are more likely than their White counterparts to live with chronic illnesses that require prescription drugs, like diabetes, obesity and high blood pressure.
  • When drug corporations set high prices, many Latinos—who often lack insurance and contend with low wages—are forced to make tough trade-offs to make ends meet.
  • As the COVID pandemic rages on, challenges to accessible medication have expanded for Latinos, with newly released COVID-19 treatments coming with a high price tag despite the use of taxpayer dollars to develop the drugs and tremendous community need.
  • The COVID pandemic has raised the urgency for Latinos, who overwhelmingly support long-overdue reforms that increase accountability for drug corporations and lower the cost of prescription drugs so that every person who needs them can afford them.

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