Patients For Affordable Drugs NOW Founder and Cancer Patient David Mitchell Testifies Before Senate Judiciary Committee On Need For Patent Reforms To Lower Drug Prices
Calls For Closing Loopholes Exploited By Drug Companies, Restoring Patent System’s Intent To Spur Innovation Not To Block Competition

WASHINGTON, D.C. — David Mitchell, founder of Patients For Affordable Drugs NOW and a patient with a rare incurable cancer, will testify at 10 AM today before the United States Senate Judiciary Committee about the anticompetitive tactics used by pharmaceutical companies to extend drug monopolies and keep prices high for patients in the United States. Watch the testimony for the “Ensuring Affordable & Accessible Medications: Examining Competition in the Prescription Drug Market” hearing.

Mitchell will emphasize the urgent need for bipartisan reforms that strike the right balance between ensuring patents reward true innovation while facilitating timely competition to make prescription drugs affordable for people whose lives depend on them.

In his testimony submitted to the committee, Mitchell highlighted how pharmaceutical companies manipulate the patent system to extend their monopolies and block lower-cost generic and biosimilar competition from entering the market, rather than incentivizing genuine innovation as the laws intend. He pointed to strategies like product hopping, patent thicketing, pay-for-delay deals, and misuse of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) citizen petitions as prime examples of Big Pharma’s tactics that reduce competition and keep prices higher for longer. Mitchell voiced strong support for a package of bipartisan bills in the Senate that rein in these abuses and close loopholes that drugmakers exploit at the expense of patients. By tackling anticompetitive practices, the reforms would realign incentives to spur innovation while better facilitating timely market entry to drive down prices consistent with the will of Congress.

As someone battling an incurable blood cancer, Mitchell knows firsthand the importance of innovation for developing new, life-extending treatments. “I care deeply about innovation and new drug development. My life depends on it. Without innovation, I will die sooner than I hope to,” he shared in his testimony. “That is not a plea for sympathy – it’s just an unfortunate fact.”

His testimony also highlighted the stories of other patients struggling with high drug costs, such as Judy from Maine who was initially skeptical but relieved when her Enbrel copay went from over $2,000 to $0 thanks to the Inflation Reduction Act, and Samantha from West Virginia who has been in recovery for 10 years but has to pay $800 for a 90-day supply of Suboxone for opioid addiction treatment. His testimony also shared that Beatel from Minnesota saw the price for 40mg of cholesterol drug Tricor skyrocket to $1,800 per month after joining Medicare at 65 but found the pharmacist could provide the same 80mg dose using 160mg tablets for just $40 since that larger dose was off-patent. And lastly, John from Baltimore, who is also battling multiple myeloma, pays $990 per pill for the cancer drug Revlimid that his insurer refuses to cover, leaving him feeling “hijacked” and at the mercy of the manufacturer’s assistance program – a situation he says is “scarier than the disease itself.”

Key highlights from the testimony include:

You can find the full written testimony linked HERE


Patients for Affordable Drugs NOW, is the only national, bipartisan patient advocacy organization focused exclusively on policies to lower drug prices. We empower and mobilize patients and allies, hold accountable those in power, and fight to shape and achieve system-changing policies that make prescription drugs affordable for all people in the United States. P4ADNOW does not accept funding from organizations that profit from the development or distribution of prescription drugs. To learn more visit