Nearly 80 percent of the patients who looked up things online before seeing a doctor reported that their searches actually improved their experience. (Source: Anthony M. Cocco, a doctor at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Melbourne, and the lead author on a recent scientific study about the search habits of people before they show up in an E.R.)
In one study, researchers found that only one of the top 54 results for “endometriosis” — the subject of over 4.5 million searches annually — led to a page that contained what was deemed to be accurate information about the condition.
The study’s author recommends skipping the kind of scientific papers you might find on Google Scholar or PubMed; they often contain unusual cases and bewildering terminology.
Merck has published reports outlining the company’s average list and net price increases for its products. Merck’s average net prices after factoring in those discounts decreased by 1.9% in 2017 as list prices increased 6.6%.
PBMs are primarily responsible for developing and maintaining the formulary, contracting with pharmacies, negotiating discounts and rebates with drug manufacturers, and processing and paying prescription drug claims.
While drug distributors convert 45% of their gross profit to EBITDA, and insurers and pharmacies around 30%, PBMs convert 85%.
Just three PBMs control eighty percent of the prescription market, driving enough revenue to put them way ahead of all drug manufacturers on the Fortune 500.
Express Scripts, by some estimates, the company’s profit per prescription has increased an average of 38% every year between 2003 and 2016. That kind of growth has landed Express Scripts at number 22 on the Fortune 500 list in 2017.
The S&P 500 healthcare sector has been on a tear in recent months, on track for its best quarter in five years and surging to an all-time high on Friday.
A forensic accounting of available financial data of the pharmaceutical giants Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, Merck Sharp & Dohme, and Abbott—shows that from 2013 to 2015, these four multinational drug makers collectively avoided paying about $3.7 billion in taxes.
Publishing in JAMA Internal Medicine the median estimated cost of the full range of studies: $19 million to get new drug approval.
Pharma’s primary customer continues to be Wall Street.