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Aducanumab (Aduhelm), the controversial $56,000-per-year Alzheimer’s disease drug approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in June 2021, has the potential to cost the federal government many billions of dollars — more, by one estimate, than it spends on agencies such as the Environmental Protection Agency or the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. The drug’s extraordinary price tag helps explain why, soon after its approval, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) opened a national coverage determination to decide whether and under what circumstances Medicare would pay for it.1


From The New England Journal of Medicine, Sachs, Rachel E. and Nicholas Bagley, "Medicare Coverage of Aducanumab - Implications for State Budgets.", Vol. 385, no. 22, Pages 2019-2021. Copyright © 2021 Massachusetts Medical Society. Reprinted with permission.