Two Drug-Related Legislative Plans Pose Problems For Stakeholders
"The Senate dealt a blow to the drug lobby Thursday by voting to permit people in the United States to order lower-cost drugs from Canada over the Internet," the Associated Press/Arizona Republic reports. The drugs in question are often made in the U.S., and then sold abroad for lower prices than at home because because of government policies in many other countries. The bill would make it legal to re-import those drugs more readily. The drug provision passed as an amendment to a Department of Homeland Security funding bill and was introduced by Republican Louisianna Sen. David Vitter (Taylor, 7/9).
Meanwhile, "Television networks and other media companies are rushing to try to quash a plan they say amounts to a tax on advertisements for prescription drugs," the Wall Street Journal reports. "The change for drug ads is on a short list of new taxes that House Ways and Means Committee members want to use to pay for a $1 trillion overhaul of the health-care system. [Rep. Charles Rangel, D-N.Y.,] said earlier this year that denying the deduction to pharmaceutical firms would raise $37 billion over 10 years" (Vaughan, 7/10).