ICYMI: Two WSJ Articles Highlight High Drug Prices

Two-fer ICYMI: Two WSJ Articles Highlight High Drug Prices

Wall Street Journal: Pharmaceutical Companies Buy Rivals’ Drugs, Then Jack Up the Prices

“More pharmaceutical companies are buying drugs that they see as undervalued, then raising the prices. It is one of a number of industry tactics, along with companies regularly upping the prices of their own older medicines and launching new treatments at once unheard of sums, driving up the cost of drugs.  Since 2008, branded-drug prices have increased 127%, compared with an 11% rise in the consumer price index, according to drug-benefits manager Express Scripts Holding Co. Needham & Co. said in a June 2014 research note there were as many as 50% drug-price increases during the previous 21Ž2 years as there were in the prior decade… For drug companies, price hikes offer an easy way to boost sales without years of costly, risky research to find new medicines.”

Wall Street JournalMultiple Sclerosis Drug Prices Rose at an ‘Alarming’ Rate: Study

“There has been an ‘alarming rise’ in the cost of multiple sclerosis treatments over the past dozen years and the cost of these drugs increased at rates well beyond the overall growth in prescription drug prices, according to a new study.  The study found that costs for three older medicines, which were launched between 1993 and 1996, rose by statistically significant amounts after a new type of treatment became available in 2002. And a similar pattern of rising costs continued as still newer medications were approved by regulators between 2010 and 2013, according to the study, which appears in the Neurology medical journal.”