Sen. Bernie Sanders and U.S. Rep. Elijah E. Cummings on Thursday launched an investigation into soaring generic drug prices. “We are conducting an investigation into the recent staggering price increases for generic drugs used to treat everything from common medical conditions to life-threatening illnesses,” Sanders, chairman of a Senate health care subcommittee, and Cummings, ranking member of the House oversight committee, wrote in letters to 14 pharmaceutical companies.
Today, 42% of doctors practice as salaried employees of hospital systems, up from 24% in 2004, according to Cegedim Relationship Management, a marketing consultant. As a result, the pharmaceutical industry is shifting its sales efforts from doctors to the institutions they work for. In 2005, drug companies employed about 102,000 U.S. sales representatives, who mostly pitch to doctors. By mid-2014, according to ZS Associates, a consulting firm, their numbers were down to about 63,000.
New blood pressure advice could mean less treatment — or none at all — for millions over the age of 60. With two-thirds of Americans over 60 experiencing high blood pressure, new treatment guidelines released on Wednesday might mean fewer medications, lower doses or even none at all for millions of people.
Congress introduces new tele health legislation. Representatives Doris Matsui (D-CA) and Bill Johnson (R-OH), members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee which has jurisdiction over health care and technology issues, introduced bipartisan legislation to create a federal definition of telehealth. The Telehealth Modernization Act of 2013 would provide principles that states can look to for guidance when developing new policies that govern telehealth.”With technology rapidly changing and reaching every aspect of our daily lives we must ensure the regulatory environment keeps pace,” said Congresswoman Matsui.”