Despite Voters’ Drug Price Concerns, GOP Candidates Offer Few Options On The Issue
Politico examines how the Republican presidential candidates are dealing with consumers' unhappiness over rapidly rising drug costs. Also, STAT analyzes investments in health care companies by members of Congress.
GOP Candidates Struggle To Address Public Ire Over Drug Costs
What the 2016 GOP presidential candidates don’t say is that Medicare should negotiate drug prices or that the government should limit drug maker’s profits, steps that might dramatically shake up the marketplace. For the most part, they’re not even making modest suggestions to stem rising costs, focusing instead on hammering a few headline-making companies that they portray as bad actors. Even as they try to address an issue that polls show is voters’ No. 1 health concern, the candidates are caught in the box of Republican free market orthodoxy — and also, of long-standing relationships with the pharmaceutical industry, a lobbying powerhouse on the Hill. (Demko and Karlin, 12/1)
Investments Give Lawmakers Personal Stake in Biotech, Health Care
A STAT analysis of thousands of pages of congressional disclosure forms found that about 30 percent of senators and 20 percent of representatives held assets in biomedical and health-care companies, or in specialty funds set up to invest in those industries, during 2014. The most common investments in the House were Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, Merck, and Abbott Laboratories. In the Senate, investors favored Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, and Merck. (Kaplan and Swetlitz, 12/1)