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Do higher prescription drug prices affect usage for elderly patients?

When drug prices go up, does demand decrease? Not necessarily said Maria Polyakova, a professor of health research and policy and Stanford Health Policy core faculty member. In her study, "Out of Pocket Cost and Utilization of Healthcare among Elderly and Pre-elderly Adults," Polyakova used data from Medicare Part D — the prescription drug branch of Medicare, covered by private insurance companies — to determine how older people respond to price changes. In her preliminary findings, Polyakova discovered that people with acute conditions were less likely than patients with chronic conditions to change their drug usage when prices increased.