Branded drug makers made billions while blocking generics

  • Makers of brand-name drugs called out by the Trump administration for potentially stalling generic competition have hiked their prices by double-digit percentages since 2012 and cost Medicare and Medicaid nearly $12 billion in 2016, a Kaiser Health News analysis has found.
  • The analysis shows that drug companies that may have engaged in what FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb called “shenanigans” to delay the entrance of cheaper competitors onto the market have indeed raised prices and cost taxpayers more money over time.
  • A KHN analysis found that 47 of the drugs cost Medicare and Medicaid almost $12 billion in 2016.

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Generic drug prices: Patients paying the price

imgresPrices on more than a dozen generics have soared at least 10-fold over the past 12 months. Off-patent medicines saved patients in the U.S. $193 billion in 2011 and more than $1 trillion since 2002, says the Generic Pharmaceutical Association. Yet their cost containment effect has diminished noticeably this year, according to Express Scripts Holding, the largest processor of prescription drug claims in the U.S. Its index of the most-often-prescribed generic drugs shows the annual rate at which prices have been falling slowed to 14 percent in September, from 30 percent in January. Continue reading