KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Cantor Calls For Repeal Of Medical Device Tax; Bipartisan Senate Bill Seeks To End Generic Drug Delays

In a speech, the House majority leader criticized the health law but focused his attention on the overhaul's taxes. Meanwhile, the Senate measure would prohibit companies that make brand-name drugs from paying generic manufacturers to keep their products off the market.

The Hill: Cantor: Repeal 'ObamaCare' Taxes
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) emphasized repealing the taxes in President Obama's healthcare law during a speech outlining the House GOP's priorities. Although Cantor criticized the entire law, he focused his specific calls for repeal on the law's new taxes — specifically a 2 percent excise tax on medical device manufacturers (Baker, 2/5). 

Reuters: Senate To Mull Ban On 'Pay For Delay' Pharmaceutical Deals
Key Democratic and Republican senators reintroduced legislation on Tuesday that would make it illegal for brand-name pharmaceutical companies to pay generic drug makers to keep their cheaper medicines off the market. Such deals, in which big drug companies resolve patent litigation with potentially infringing generic firms by reaching a settlement that delays a generic version of a drug in exchange for a payment, have angered U.S. and European antitrust enforcers for years (Bartz, 2/5).

In other pharmaceutical industry news -

The Wall Street Journal: FDA Warns Of New Batch Of Fake Cancer Drug
The Food and Drug Administration said Tuesday it has warned doctors that another counterfeit batch of the cancer drug Avastin has reached medical practices in the U.S. The warning follows a string of alerts last year, when the agency told doctors that versions of Avastin sold by at least two drug-distribution networks were fakes, containing cornstarch, acetone and other chemicals and none of the genuine drug's active ingredient (Weaver, 2/5). This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.