Delaying the Medicare rebate rule is a step in the right direction for patients struggling to afford their prescription medication. But preventing cost-shifting is not a substitute for real reforms that rein in drug corporations’ monopoly power to raise prices anytime they want.
This settlement makes a mockery of justice. While four of the most profitable drug corporations in the world agree to share a fraction of their profits with victims of opioids, not one of the executives responsible for this epidemic is being held accountable.
These actions by President Biden — importation and ending pay-for-delay on generics — are helpful steps to increase competition and access for patients on some drugs. But these steps alone won’t fundamentally solve the problem of price gouging by pharmaceutical corporations that have monopoly power to set and increase prices whenever they want.
For the pharmaceutical industry, Independence Day is secondary to their favorite reason to celebrate in July: price hikes always come first.
Statement from Margarida Jorge, campaign director for Lower Drug Prices Now, on the Senate Finance Committee’s Principles for Drug Pricing Reform:
“The principles for drug pricing reform released by the Senate Finance Committee are a big step in the right direction and demonstrate that Chairman Wyden plans to prioritize patients,
The hefty price tag for Biogen’s new Alzheimer’s drug proves that when drug corporations have monopoly power to set prices, they will set them ridiculously high. Biogen is selling false hopes, rather than clinical results, to desperate families — but still stands to make a profit. Already since the announcement of the FDA’s approval, Biogen’s share price has skyrocketed.
It’s appalling, but not surprising, that Johnson & Johnson is trying to get the conservative justices on the Supreme Court to let them off the hook. This is a company that knowingly and intentionally targeted African American women with a carcinogenic product that resulted in the development of life-threatening ovarian cancer.