Quantcast

Even Health Ins. Cos. Are Fed Up With Big Rx Price Gouging

Image: book cover, “Big Pharma, Big Greed: The inside story of one lawyer’s battle to stem the flood of dangerous medicines and protect public health” https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07NM5HYDS/ref=dp-kindle-redirect?_encoding=UTF8&btkr=1

“Drug corporations are ripping people off, and anyone who wants to compete with them deserves credit.”  Ben Wakana, Patients for Affordable Drugs

Jan. 22, 2020

Los Angeles Times – A group of leading U.S. health insurers, frustrated by the high cost of prescription drugs, plan to start manufacturing versions of popular generic medications, hoping the competition with pharmaceutical companies will bring down costs.

The move — the latest salvo in the escalating battle to control drug prices — highlights the failure of the Trump administration and Congress to deliver relief for millions of Americans struggling to afford their medications.

...article continued below
- Advertisement -

The announcement also comes as the state of California is exploring its own drug manufacturing plan.

Neither effort would affect the high price of branded pharmaceuticals, which is the largest driver of U.S. drug spending.

But the move could pressure drugmakers to rein in prices, particularly manufacturers that have dramatically hiked prices on products that have been on the market for years, even decades.

Leading the new effort is a consortium of 18 independent and locally owned Blue Cross and Blue Shield health plans, including Oakland-based Blue Shield of California, which is helping to spearhead the $55-million effort.

“Our core challenge is making our product affordable, and one of the biggest barriers to that is getting pharmaceuticals to be affordable,” said Blue Shield of California Chief Executive Paul Markovich. “We don’t see the status quo getting us there.”

...article continued below
- Advertisement -

The Blue plans have not disclosed which drugs they will manufacture. But officials said the list would include generic medications widely used by patients with common chronic illnesses such as diabetes, multiple sclerosis and some mental health conditions.

The insurers — which cover about 40 million people — hope to make the first lower-priced drugs available to patients by early 2022.

They are working with Civica Rx, a Utah-based nonprofit.

It was founded two years ago with a group of U.S. hospital systems to manufacture lower-cost medications that were frequently subject to shortages or exorbitant pricing.

Civica already has 18 medications in production, according to the company.

That partnership may bring real relief to some Americans, said Ben Wakana, executive director of Patients for Affordable Drugs, a Washington, D.C.-based advocacy organization … Read more. 

RELATED: 

Big Pharma Rings In 2020 With Price Hikes On 250 Rx

Rob. You. Blind. How Big Pharma Rigs The Game

How Doctors, Hospitals, And Big Pharma Fleece Patients, Consumers, And Taxpayers

MORE OF TODAY’S TOP HEALTH NEWS: Subway Outbreak Linked To 1 Crapped-In Topping | Biohazard Unit Isolates China Virus Carrier | Foods That Cause Mental Disorders | Ins. Cos. Are Fed Up With Big-Rx Price Gouging

- Advertisement -

TRENDING

Unvaxxed Sailors Face “Serious Consequences”

The Navy said Thursday that those who don't get an approved exemption by the deadline "will receive no lower than a general discharge under honorable conditions" and that "this type of discharge could result in the loss of some veterans’ benefits."

COVID Cases Still Rising In 5 States

THE HILL – Cases of COVID-19 are declining across the country, with 90 percent of states seeing numbers either sustained or going down over...

Bill Clinton Hospitalized With Sepsis

Former President Bill Clinton was admitted to a Southern California hospital with an infection but is "on the mend," his spokesman said.

New Sex Charges Against ‘Predator’ Bill Cosby

"The Pennsylvania Supreme Court let a predator back on the streets." – Cosby accuser Lili Bernard

Animal Rights Law Lays An Egg

Egg-laying hens are required to have 1 and 1/2 square feet of floor space under a law that was to become effective this month. But it's become clear that few egg producers can meet the Massachusetts standard.

Which COVID Vaccine Boosters Work Best?

A study by the National Institutes of Health this week suggests people who got the J&J vaccine as their initial vaccination against the coronavirus may get their best protection from choosing an mRNA vaccine as the booster.

Unvaxxed United Employees Win Reprieve

A federal judge has extended a ban on United Airlines putting employees on unpaid leave for seeking a medical or religious exemption from the airline's requirement to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

Walgreen’s Accidentally Injects Tots With Covid Vaccine

Two children were mistakenly given the Covid-19 vaccine instead of a flu shot a week ago at their local pharmacy -- and are now dealing with some adverse symptoms.

Biden Pushes Largest Permanent Food Stamp Increase Ever

FOUNDATION FOR ECONOMIC EDUCATION – The Biden administration has just introduced the largest increase in the history of the food stamp program (now SNAP, for...

Biden/Pelosi Covid Recovery Spending Plan Fails

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi could have been speaking for the majority of Democrats in Washington when she said on Tuesday that she was “very disappointed” that President Biden’s domestic agenda will have to be pared down because of opposition from Democratic Sens. Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona.
- Advertisement -