Advocates ‘Concerned’ China Tariffs Will Cause Already Rising Drug Prices To Increase Even More
Experts are trying to unpack the implications of placing tariffs on the world's largest supplier of active pharmaceutical ingredients will have on U.S. drug prices. While there are many layers to take into account, some worry it will exacerbate an already daunting problem.
Will The Trump Tariffs On China Raise Drug Prices For Americans?
Now that the Trump administration has proposed 25 percent tariffs on thousands of Chinese-made products, including raw ingredients for a slew of medicines, there are concerns that prices for these products may rise, although experts caution the long-term impact remains unclear. Among the medicines that could be affected are insulin, epinephrine, heparin, antibiotics, antidepressants, tranquilizers, and vaccines, according to the list released by the U.S. trade representative. However, the agency cautioned that the list, which also includes numerous raw ingredients, is incomplete and not intended to “delimit, in any way, the scope of the proposed action.” (Silverman, 4/4)
China Tariffs Could Raise Prices For Prescription Drugs In US, Groups Warn
Advocates and drugmakers worry that the tariffs would make generic products more expensive as the nation continues to struggle with already high drug prices. "We are concerned that the proposed tariffs may lead to increased costs of manufacturing for generics and biosimilars and thus higher prescription drug prices for patients in the U.S.," said a statement from the Association for Accessible Medicines, an organization that represents prescription drug manufacturers. (Hellmann, 4/4)
Generic Industry: Chinese Tariffs Could Increase U.S. Drug Costs
“We’re concerned that the proposed list of tariffs could impact the cost of production for generic and bosimilar medicines, and therefore impact drug costs in the United States negatively,“ said Jeff Francer, the generic drug trade group’s senior VP and general counsel. While the generic industry manufactures a large amount of medicines in the U.S. — about 61 billions doses each year — it relies heavily on ingredients from other countries. Both the brand and generic industries import about two-thirds of active pharmaceutical ingredients used to make finished drugs, Francer said. (Karlin-Smith, 4/4)
In other pharmaceutical news —
Drug Makers Still Have A Bad Reputation Among Patient Groups
Just 45 percent of patient groups thought the pharmaceutical industry had an “excellent” or “good” reputation last year. Despite the poor showing, however, this is still an improvement — albeit, a modest one — from the 38 percent of patient groups that offered the same assessment in 2016, according to PatientView, a research firm that canvassed more than 1,300 patient groups from 95 countries. (Silverman, 4/5)
State Probing Whether Pharmacy Benefit Managers Are Overcharging Taxpayers
Ohio Medicaid officials pledged Wednesday to investigate claims that pharmacy benefit managers are paying pharmacists far less to fill prescriptions than they charge the state, allowing them to pocket the difference. Critics say the practice, known as spread pricing, is increasing costs in the tax-funded Medicaid program and driving many pharmacies out of business because some drug reimbursements are less than the cost to pharmacies of acquiring the medication. (Candisky, 4/4)