Executives: Outrage Over Pharma Profiteering Is ‘Perversion Of Reality

Executives: Outrage Over Pharma Profiteering Is ‘Perversion Of Reality
This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations.
The drug makers defended their products as life saving, and dismissed concerns over prices as “more of a campaign issue than an actual issue.” In other pharmaceutical news, a California cost transparency bill is shelved and the Pfizer and Allergan CEOs tout plans to boost medicine production.

STAT: Drug Makers Dismiss Outrage Over High Prices As ‘Abomination’
The protesters carried handwritten signs accusing drug maker Gilead Sciences of greed for pricing its breakthrough hepatitis C drug at $84,000 per treatment. So it perhaps wasn’t surprising that during a panel discussion here Monday, a Gilead executive was asked how he lives with himself. (Robbins, 1/12)

Los Angeles Times: Bill That Aimed To Shed Light On Specialty Prescription Drug Pricing Is Shelved
In a battle between two Capitol lobbying heavyweights — health insurers and pharmaceutical companies — the latter scored a major win Tuesday, beating back a measure designed to provide more transparency on prescription drug pricing. Assemblyman David Chiu (D-San Francisco) declined to put his transparency measure up for a vote in a key committee Tuesday, effectively killing the bill. (Mason, 1/13)

The San Jose Mercury News: High-Cost Drugs: California Legislator Pulls Bill Seeking Cost ‘Transparency’
In a surprising last-minute move, the Bay Area lawmaker carrying legislation to increase the “transparency” of prescription drug costs in California on Tuesday pulled his bill off the Assembly Health Committee agenda, saying he didn’t have the votes. (Seipel, 1/12)

The Associated Press: Pfizer, Allergan CEOs: Tie-Up Aims For Growth, Not Cost Cuts
The heads of drugmakers Pfizer and Allergan said Tuesday that the record $160 billion combination they’re planning is meant to produce more medicines and boost revenue, not to just slash jobs and other costs as the companies previously have done. (Johnson, 1/12)

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