Pharmaceutical companies may be blaming others for high drug prices, but they’re the ones who set the prices, the head of a pharmacy benefit manager group told me Oct. 27.
“We understand that the drug industry is in a desperate situation right now and is lashing out at a lot of different groups in order to deflect attention,” said Mark Merritt, president and chief executive officer of the Pharmaceutical Care Management Association (PCMA). “But ultimately, the drug manufacturer sets the price, and I think you have to start there.”
Drugmakers are under heavy scrutiny by lawmakers, consumers, medical professionals and presidential candidates for their pricing practices. Most recently, generic drugmaker Mylan Inc. came under attack for increasing the cost of its EpiPen allergy injection by 400 percent in nine years.
Meanwhile, Matt Gorman, the strategic campaign communications director at the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO), told me Oct. 31 “the list price is not what the manufacturer generally makes on the drug,” and “at the end of the day, the insurer really determines what a person actually pays for a drug.”
Gorman said, “There’s been a lot of shouting about price, and I think it really started to amp up when insurance companies were looking for a scapegoat, essentially after premiums had to skyrocket for them under the” Affordable Care Act.
Insurers “needed to find a scapegoat and even their own data, which they’re required to disclose under that same law, show that drug prices are clearly not the reason for increased premiums,” Gorman said. “They’re a very small portion of that.”
Stay on top of new developments in health law and regulation with a free trial to the Health Law Resource Center.
Learn more about Bloomberg Law and sign up for a free trial.
All Bloomberg BNA treatises are available on standing order, which ensures you will always receive the most current edition of the book or supplement of the title you have ordered from Bloomberg BNA’s book division. As soon as a new supplement or edition is published (usually annually) for a title you’ve previously purchased and requested to be placed on standing order, we’ll ship it to you to review for 30 days without any obligation. During this period, you can either (a) honor the invoice and receive a 5% discount (in addition to any other discounts you may qualify for) off the then-current price of the update, plus shipping and handling or (b) return the book(s), in which case, your invoice will be cancelled upon receipt of the book(s). Call us for a prepaid UPS label for your return. It’s as simple and easy as that. Most importantly, standing orders mean you will never have to worry about the timeliness of the information you’re relying on. And, you may discontinue standing orders at any time by contacting us at 1.800.960.1220 or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Put me on standing order at a 5% discount off list price of all future updates, in addition to any other discounts I may quality for. (Returnable within 30 days.)
Notify me when updates are available (No standing order will be created).
This Bloomberg BNA report is available on standing order, which ensures you will all receive the latest edition. This report is updated annually and we will send you the latest edition once it has been published. By signing up for standing order you will never have to worry about the timeliness of the information you need. And, you may discontinue standing orders at any time by contacting us at 1.800.372.1033, option 5, or by sending us an email to email@example.com.
Put me on standing order
Notify me when new releases are available (no standing order will be created)