What We're Reading: GOP Infighting May Derail ACA Repeal and Replace Plans

What we're reading, December 6, 2016: Members of the GOP are unhappy with the leadership's plans for a 3-year repeal and replace of Obamacare; California bill would require superbugs be listed on death certificates; and Novo Nordisk promises to limit drug price hikes.

The House Freedom Caucus is unhappy with the GOP’s 3-year replacement plan for Obamacare and is ready to fight back. According to POLITICO, the Freedom Caucus members, who are Republicans, believe the Affordable Care Act (ACA) should be replaced within the 2-year period of the 115th Congress. However, GOP leadership seem to prefer a 3-year plan, which would give them time to create an adequate replacement. With Democrats expected to vote against any ACA repeal and replacement plans, the GOP will need the votes of the Freedom Caucus.

A California bill would require that antibiotic-resistant infections be listed on a death certificate if they played a role in the person’s death. Currently, deaths from infections are not publicly recorded, and only estimates are available. Under the bill, the information about infections and deaths would be reported to the public, but no hospital names would be included. California officials estimate that up to 9000 Californians die yearly from hospital-acquired infections.

Following Allergan’s example, Novo Nordisk has become the second drug manufacturer to promise to limit drug price increases. The company’s president said it would not raise any medicine’s list price by more than single-digit percentages, annually, reported STAT. Novo specializes in diabetes drugs, and President Jakob Riis cited the challenges patients with diabetes face affording healthcare and the medicines they need. Growing frustration with drug pricing and increased interest from Washington may explain why some drug companies are taking voluntary steps now.