But Bari Talente, an executive vice president of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, said, “Many people with M.S. rely on co-pay assistance, even for generic medications.”
In the last few years, she said, generic versions of the drug Copaxone have become available, but even they have high prices. One of the generic medicines costs $60,000 to $65,000 a year.
Carl E. Schmid II, the deputy executive director of the AIDS Institute, a public policy and advocacy organization, said the administration’s proposal could sharply increase out-of-pocket costs, so that a consumer who now pays virtually nothing might have to pay $3,500 a year or more for a drug to treat H.I.V.
“That increases the likelihood that people won’t pick up their drugs, won’t take their drugs,” Mr. Schmid said.
Leyla Mansour-Cole, the policy director of the Diabetes Patient Advocacy Coalition, a nonprofit group, said the Trump administration proposal “caused trepidation” for some patients.
“In theory, co-pay coupons could encourage people to take higher-priced drugs,” Ms. Mansour-Cole said. “In reality, people use them to get the medicines that their doctors prescribe, despite astronomically high deductibles.”
The administration is proposing several other changes that could increase costs for consumers.
Under the proposal, fewer people would qualify for federal subsidies, and those who qualify could be required to spend a larger share of their income on insurance premiums.