Climbing made its debut at the Olympics this week, but we’ve been watching drug prices ascend to new heights for years.
Welcome to the Week in Review.
1. Seniors Vote Yes On Medicare Negotiation
- Across the country, seniors of all political affiliations agree: Medicare must be allowed to negotiate lower drug prices. A new poll from the Alliance for Retired Americans indicates that drug pricing reform is a winning issue, as seniors are more likely to vote for a candidate who supports Medicare negotiation. Right now, elected officials have the choice to side with patients or protect pharma’s unfettered pricing power. Voters are taking note. — (Alliance for Retired Americans)
2. Sounding Off: Letters For Lower Drug Prices
- This week, lawmakers and Americans from all over the country wrote letters highlighting the need for drug pricing reform. Twelve senators signed a letter to Senate leadership asking to include Medicare negotiation in the reconciliation bill. In an op-ed, Delaware state Senator Jack Walsh urged Senators Chris Coons and Tom Carper to help pass legislation to allow Medicare to negotiate drug prices. And in letters to their local publications, constituents in Colorado, Rhode Island, and Florida discussed how lowering prices would help improve the lives of vulnerable communities, including seniors and people of color. It’s clear: Lowering drug prices is a top priority for Americans. — (Endpoints News, Delaware Business Times, Sentinel Colorado, Westerly Sun, The Ledger)
3. AbbVie’s Patent Abuses
- While patients in other countries are benefiting from biosimilar competition to AbbVie’s top-selling drug Humira, Americans are forced to pay increasing prices that are five times what Europeans pay as AbbVie blocks competition with deals to delay biosimilars from entering the U.S. market until 2023. Just this year, AbbVie raised the price of Humira by 7.4 percent, continuing its trend of annual price hikes. Our broken patent system is breaking the bank for patients and taxpayers. We must reform it to incentivize innovation, not decades-long monopoly pricing. — (Axios)