Perspectives: USPS Crisis; Biden’s Health Plans; Physician Dispensing; And Medical Innovation
Read recent commentaries about drug-cost issues.
The USPS Is A Vital Part Of Our Health Care System
While typically around five percent of prescriptions filled in the U.S. are through mail-order channels, a recent consumer survey conducted by AMCP and the Alliance of Community Health Plans found that nearly a quarter (24 percent) of respondents shared that they depend on the mail for their medicines during the pandemic. For the millions of Americans who rely on mail-order medications, the delays have made medication delivery less reliable and unpredictable, jeopardizing health outcomes. (Susan Cantrell, 8/24)
Biden Plans Could Harm Latinx, And All Americans’, Medication Access
It is now perplexing that [Joe] Biden is embracing many of his defeated opponents’ ideas, which Democratic base voters rejected just a few months ago. He established a “unity” task force populated by the most vocal supporters of Bernie Sanders, who lost the primaries resoundingly. This advisory group recently recommended two far-left measures that could inadvertently disrupt many working-class Americans’ access to health care. The first measure could weaken patent protections, which prevent generic drug manufacturers from copying and selling brand-name medicines developed by rival companies. Inventing a single new treatment costs about $2.6 billion, according to a 2014 Tufts University study. In 2019 alone, the world’s 10 largest pharmaceutical companies spent $82 billion on research and development. (Rosa Mendoza, 8/22)
Bucks County Courier Times:
Is Physician Dispensing Worsening The Opioid Crisis?
The opioid epidemic in the United States is out of control with an average of 130 deaths per day — https://bit.ly/2Pjdwiv. This is a sixfold increase in less than 20 years. The U.S. Council of Economic Advisors recently estimated — https://bit.ly/3gtUwtq — the crisis’ annual cost at $504.0 billion, almost 35% of the gross domestic product, GDP. Although there are many reasons for the epidemic, physician dispensing, also called in-office dispensing, may worsen the problem. Physician drug dispensing is when doctors write prescriptions for themselves, or have them filled by staff, to keep a constant drug supply in their clinics. (Jonathan Ni, 8/25)
Dallas Morning News:
Global Pharmaceutical Models Would Destroy U.S. Medical Innovation
As scientists race for treatments and vaccines to stamp out the spread of COVID-19, American pharmaceutical companies are helping lead the way, with groundbreaking, rapidly developing research that has allowed us to hold out collective hope for an end to this pandemic. Yet, while the government has wisely stepped up its partnership with the private sector, investing resources and loosening regulations that would hamper our ability to rush toward a cure, it is on the precipice of making a devastating mistake that could bring innovation to a devastating halt. (Tom Kowalski, 8/21)