New Report Demonstrates How Brand Name Drug Companies Work in “Lockstep” to Hit Patients with Higher Prices on Life-Saving Medications
In case you missed it, a new report this week from Patients for Affordable Drugs (P4AD) looks into the history of two blockbuster blood-thinning medications, Bristol Myers Squibb and Pfizer’s Eliquis and Johnson & Johnson’s Xarelto. The study found prices for both drugs have more than doubled since coming to market in 2011, and that the Big Pharma companies who manufacture them have seemingly hiked prices in “lockstep” to prevent consumers from accessing lower-cost medications.
The report cites three specific examples where prices on both medications have been hiked very closely to one another. In the summer of 2015, in the spring of 2016 and in the winter of 2017. Despite unprecedented scrutiny on prescription drug prices as pressure mounted on Washington to hold Big Pharma accountable, the companies continued to hike prices on the drugs. Earlier this year, Bristol Myers Squibb and Pfizer hiked the price of Eliquis by six percent, and Johnson & Johnson hiked the price of Xarelto by almost five percent.
The impact of this price-gouging on patients and taxpayers is massive. Eliquis was the number one most-costly drug for Medicare Part D in 2020, and Xarelto the third most-costly. Eliquis cost Medicare Part D close to $10 billion in 2020, while Xarelto cost the program just under $5 billion. These are just two examples in a wider pattern of egregious pricing behavior from Big Pharma. An analysis from Kaiser Family Foundation earlier this year showed that Big Pharma hiked prices faster than the rate of inflation on 23 of the top 25 most popular prescription drugs in the Medicare Part D program — including both Eliquis and Xarelto. Read the full report from Patients for Affordable Drugs HERE.
Read more about Big Pharma’s faster-than-inflation price hikes HERE.
Learn more about solutions to lower prescription drug prices and hold Big Pharma accountable HERE.