Why prescription prices stay high: Pharma recycles old medications

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

Why prescription prices stay high: Pharma recycles old medications

Oatent extensions let drug makers keep prices high and prevent competition, as described in a recent study from the University of California at Hastings College of the Law tracks. “Rather than creating new medicines, pharmaceutical companies are recycling and repurposing old ones,” write the authors, Robin Feldman and Connie Wang. “Every year, at least 74% […]

Two generic medications become one expensive drug: The Atlantic

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

Two generic medications become one expensive drug: The Atlantic

“Everything happened so fast as I walked out of the doctor’s exam room. I was tucking in my shirt and wondering if I’d asked all my questions about my injured shoulder when one of the doctor’s assistants handed me two small boxes of pills. ‘These will hold you over until your prescription arrives in the […]

How drug coupons undermine value purchasing in health: NEJM

How drug coupons undermine value purchasing in health: NEJM

Summary: “In 2015, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced a goal of linking at least 50% of Medicare spending to value-based payment models such as accountable care organizations,” Leemore S. Dafny, Christopher J. Ody and Matthew A. Schmitt write in the New England Journal of Medicine. “Health care providers are now scrambling […]

Prescription drug prices: The system, in all its glory.

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

Prescription drug prices: The system, in all its glory.

Summary: Rob Lamberts, a family physician, wrote this useful piece over at his blog, “Musings of a Distractible Mind.” The money quote: “This incident is just one example of the terrible gaming that routinely occurs with the prices of drugs. There are plenty of others. Why, for example, do brand name medications continue having such […]

Insurers Are Refusing To Pay For Some Common Medications: NPR

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

Insurers Are Refusing To Pay For Some Common Medications: NPR

Summary: “Express Scripts and its rivals including CVS/Caremark and OptumRX manage prescription drug coverage for insurers and employers,” Alison Kodjak writes over on NPR. “They’re trying to spark price wars among drugmakers by refusing to pay for some brand-name medications unless they get a big discount. The result is that average costs for many drugs […]

Tips for shopping for prescription drugs: Consumer Reports

Filed Under: Costs, Patients, Providers

Tips for shopping for  prescription drugs: Consumer Reports

Summary: We’ve written a lot on prescription drug pricing; here’s our prescriptions page. Consumer Reports took up the topic recently: “Millions of Americans have been hit with high drug costs within the last year. In fact, a recent Consumer Reports National Research Center poll of 1,037 adults showed that a third of those who currently […]

That Drug Coupon Isn’t Really Clipping Costs: Bloomberg Business

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

That Drug Coupon Isn’t Really Clipping Costs: Bloomberg Business

Summary: “When Valeant Pharmaceuticals International ran a TV ad after this year’s Emmy Awards broadcast featuring actor Mario Lopez promoting its new antifungal toe treatment, Jublia, the spot drew some barbs,” Cynthia Koons and Robert Langreth write in Bloomberg Business. “But it’s also lured plenty of curious consumers who heeded the company’s invitation to visit […]

Most prescribed drugs: Humira, Abilify, Enbrel, Crestor

Filed Under: Costs, Patients

Most prescribed drugs: Humira, Abilify, Enbrel, Crestor

Summary: Through June of this year, the cholesterol-lowering drug rosuvastatin (Crestor, AstraZeneca) was the most prescribed branded drug in the United States, and the arthritis drug adalimumab (Humira, Abbott Laboratories) was the best-selling branded drug, according to the latest data from research firm IMS Health,” Megan Brooks reported in Medscape Medical News. Also in the […]