Number Of Providers Prescribing Millions Of Dollars’ Worth Of Pills Surges
The new data on high-spending prescribers is the latest indication of the toll escalating drug prices are taking on the health system. Experts say that it should not reflect badly on the doctors themselves.
High-Dollar Prescribers Proliferate In Medicare’s Drug Program
The number of doctors who each prescribe millions of dollars of medications annually in Medicare’s drug program has soared, driven by expensive hepatitis C treatments and rising drug prices overall, federal data obtained by ProPublica shows. The number of providers who topped the $5 million mark for prescriptions increased more than tenfold, from 41 in 2011 to 514 in 2015. The number of prescribers—mostly physicians but also nurse practitioners–exceeding $10 million in drug costs jumped from two to 70 over the same time period, according to the data. (Ornstein and Jones, 11/17)
The Associated Press:
Drug Prices Don’t Budge Even After Pressure From Congress
Congress’s routine of publicly shaming drug company executives over high prices works no better than a placebo: It may make some people feel better, but it doesn’t treat the problem. In the last two years, House and Senate committees issued more than a dozen subpoenas to price-hiking drugmakers, collecting hundreds of thousands of documents and berating executives for more than 16 hours of public hearings. (Perrone, 11/16)