The Week in Review in Drug Pricing

Kanye and two drug pricing bills made a trip to the president’s office this week. Guess which made more news?
 
Welcome to the Week in Review in Drug Pricing.
 
1. Gag clauses — ✌️out 

  • “If there’s anything bipartisan, it’s lowering drug prices,” said the president after signing S.2553 and S.2554 into law. Pharmacists are now able to tell patients if their drugs are more affordable without health insurance. — (The Hill)  

2. THIS IS NOT OK

  • The USMCA (new NAFTA) is extending the exclusivity period on biologics to 10 instead of seven years. This will make it more difficult for generic drugs to come to market. — (WashU Expert

3. Fingers crossed, cheaper insulin

  • Recently a BMJ study revealed that, with cost being the greatest barrier to people with diabetes receiving their insulin, biosimilars may provide the answers. Why is USMCA making it harder to bring biosimilars to market? — (The Center Biosimilars

4. Kickbacks make a comeback

  • Pharmaceutical companies are paying off doctors to prescribe their patients the drugs they manufacture. Five years ago, GlaxoSmithKline was fined a few billion dollars for paying off doctors to prescribe patients specific drugs. They stopped and are starting back up again because everyone else is doing it. — (STAT

5. Evers coming up with a plan

  • Democratic candidate for governor, Tony Evers, is making strides towards holding pharmaceutical manufacturers accountable for their wildly unregulated price hikes. — (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel