Perspectives: Don’t Get Distracted By Finger-Pointing. Drug Costs Are To Blame For High Health Spending.
Read recent commentaries about drug-cost issues.
Rising Drug Prices Are The Root Cause Of Healthcare's Cost Problem
Healthcare has a cost problem. No one disputes that. But what many would dispute is the assertion that rapidly rising drug prices are the root cause of the problem. They are, as the latest data from the CMS and major hospital systems clearly show. The pharmaceutical industry's campaign to deflect attention from high drug prices was on display during the confirmation hearing for Alex Azar, the former Eli Lilly executive slated to become the next HHS secretary. (Merrill Goozner, 1/13)
Valeant's 'Significant Seven' Aren't Quite Magnificent
Don't get too close -- you might scare them -- but Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. shares are up more than 50 percent over the past two months. That's not quite as impressive as it sounds, considering the company's 91 percent share-price drop from a 2015 peak and its $26 billion in debt. But management deserves credit for cutting some debt in 2017 and shifting other obligations into the 2020s. (Max Nisen, 1/10)
Gilead, CVS And Two Other Stocks Down But Not Out
Starving in the midst of plenty, some stocks got roughed up in the fourth quarter even as the market rose. Four of these stocks — CVS, Gilead Sciences GILD +0.9%, Owens & Minor and Argan — are on my "casualty list." It’s a roster I compile quarterly, containing stocks that have been wounded and that I think will recover. This is the 55th casualty list I’ve published since mid-2000. The average one-year gain on recommendations from the first 55 lists has been 19%, compared to 9.9% for the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index. (John Dorfman, 1/15)
A $300 Billion Reason To Keep Drugs Cheap In India
Global pharmaceutical companies have bemoaned for years India's capricious policies on prices and patents. Now the government needs billions of dollars for its "Make in India" program, why can't the industry get a fairer deal? When it comes to intellectual property, it's now understood -- and grudgingly accepted -- that India's use of compulsory licensing won't go away. Ever since New Delhi used this tool to force Bayer AG to allow a low-priced local copy of its expensive cancer treatment, there's been popular support for the idea of banning profiteering at the expense of lives. (Andy Mukherjee, 1/15)
Why Prescription Drugs In Canada Could Soon Become Less Safe
In a little-noticed announcement, Health Canada in October 2017 signaled its intention to raise the fees that drug makers will have to pay when they want to get a new medication on the market. These user fees currently fund about 50 percent of Health Canada’s operating budget for regulating prescription drugs. Health Canada wants to increase that to 90 percent. In addition, it will rebate 25 percent of that fee if it fails to review new drug applications within an established period of time. (Joel Lexchin, 1/12)