Biden Administration Shifts COVID-19 Treatment Distribution to Private Sector

October 27, 2023

The Biden administration is transitioning the distribution of millions of COVID-19 treatments from the government to private insurers and drugmakers starting November 1st. This distribution shift includes Pfizer’s Paxlovid and Merck’s Lagevrio antiviral treatments. In particular, government orders of Paxlovid will cease on December 15th. From December 2021, providers can return Paxlovid packs for government credits. Medicare and Medicaid patients will receive the treatment at no cost through 2024. For the uninsured or underinsured, Paxlovid will be accessible for free through 2028 under an agreement with Pfizer. Pfizer plans to price Paxlovid at around $1,400 for a five-day course. Pfizer and Merck are also launching copay-saving programs for people with private insurance. Despite the transition’s uncertainty, the shift is hoped to iron out supply issues. The adjustment comes amid ongoing confusion over the initial round of vaccines provided by the commercial market.

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[Source: STAT, October 27th, 2023]

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