As Drug Costs Continue Climb, Large Pension Plans Cast Close Eye On Prices
The autoworkers retiree benefits trust is trying to glean how much drug makers will increase costs for specialty drugs -- and how those prices might affect everyone's bottom lines. And for one expensive hepatitis C drug, Gilead is restricting how many patients receive assistance paying for treatment.
The Wall Street Journal's CFO Journal:
UAW Trust Sought Drug-Price Risk Disclosures
Specialty drug costs are sky high, and insurers, doctors and hospitals are pushing back—in a phenomenon that played out during the most recent proxy season. One large pension plan was keen on finding out whether some pharmaceutical companies are at risk of pricing themselves out of the game. The $54 billion UAW Retiree Medical Benefits Trust, which provides health-care benefits to more than 750,000 retirees of the UAW union and their dependents, targeted six pharmaceutical companies this proxy season, according to a proxy-season wrap-up memo that law firm Gibson Dunn sent to clients on Wednesday. Three are working with the trust address to its concerns outside of a shareholder proposal, while the other three went up for vote. Two tried to block the resolutions based on Securities and Exchange rules but were denied. (Murphy, 7/16)
The Wall Street Journal's Pharmalot:
Gilead Limits Enrollment In Its Hep C Patient Program To Pressure Insurers
In a bid to push back against payers, Gilead Sciences is limiting enrollment to its patient assistance program for hepatitis C drugs, which helps people obtain the Sovaldi and Harvoni treatments when they lack sufficient insurance coverage or the financial wherewithal to get the medicines otherwise. (Silverman, 7/16)