Significant changes are likely, but not fundamental overhaul.
The health care sector may face significant changes after the coming election cycle, particularly if a Democratic presidential candidate wins the general election.
Though several industries within health care face legislative and regulatory pressures, it's unclear which specific industries a Democratic administration would prioritize for targeting reforms. However, we don't expect the government under either party to try to lower the overall cost of health care.
Indeed, a fundamental overhaul to a single‑payer health care system is unlikely in a Democratic administration, in our view. As political party margins are not likely to shift meaningfully in the Senate, more radical reform proposals would not garner enough political will to pass. Instead, we should expect that a Democratic president would focus on lowering out‑of‑pocket health care costs Americans regularly experience, which will focus scrutiny on drug prices. The two leading Democratic candidates—former Vice President Joe Biden and Senator Bernie Sanders—support drug price limits or caps, particularly for drugs that manage chronic conditions like diabetes and HIV/AIDS.
If President Donald Trump is reelected, we would expect the federal government to pursue some forms of transparency and pricing regulations on drug manufacturers. The president, like Biden, favors a plan to move domestic drug prices toward an international index of prices.
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