An abortion drug invented decades ago is being used to treat Cushing’s syndrome — and it’s bringing in tens of millions of dollars a year.
The FDA’s Scott Gottlieb says the agency is focused on the big picture, and he wants to know why pharma churns out drugs for some rare diseases but not for others.
Some of the nation’s most influential scientists recommend eight steps to lower drug prices. KHN takes the political temperature and tells you the chances of Congress acting on them.
Even though congressional Republicans set aside their Obamacare repeal-and-replace efforts this year, here are five major health policy changes that could become law as part of the pending House and Senate proposals.
The House and Senate want to reduce or eliminate federal tax credits for “orphan drugs” used to treat rare diseases, but patients are fighting against the plan.
House Republicans want to repeal federal tax credits that have helped spur a boom in orphan drugs for rare diseases.
A federal drug program blocks rural hospitals from getting discounts on rare-disease drugs, forcing staff to cut back on supplies of lifesaving medicines.
Following a KHN investigation, the Food and Drug Administration has moved to speed up approvals of “orphan drugs” while closing a loophole that allowed drugmakers to skip pediatric testing.
The FDA granted approval for Spinraza in late December for use on children and adults with spinal muscular atrophy. Insurance coverage is mostly focused on infants and children.
The high cost of Spinraza, a new and promising treatment for spinal muscular atrophy, highlights how the cost-benefit analysis insurers use to make drug coverage decisions plays out in human terms.
Amplifying the “patient voice,” those with the rarest afflictions are trained to become powerful advocates for new drugs and legislation that would help the industry.
The Government Accountability Office said it will investigate potential abuses of the orphan drug program, which offers incentives to drugmakers to develop medicines for rare diseases.
Marathon, maker of an expensive treatment for Duchenne muscular dystrophy, sells the drug for $140 million in cash and stock to PTC Therapeutics.
Amid an uproar over high drug prices, three GOP senators are asking the Government Accountability Office to investigate whether the Orphan Drug Act is being abused.
A drug from Marathon Pharmaceuticals has ignited a firestorm on Capitol Hill and beyond. What makes it different than the $750,000 drug that came before it?
After hearing complaints about its high price, Marathon Pharmaceuticals is pausing the launch of an $89,000 drug for a rare disease.
Citing a Kaiser Health News investigation, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley vows to examine the orphan drug program and possible fixes.
Luke Whitbeck’s life was saved by a rare disease drug, but it costs $300,000 a year.
The designation, which is made by the Food and Drug Administration, allows drugmakers to claim seven years of market exclusivity.
Orphan drugs for rare diseases have helped or saved hundreds of thousands of patients like 2-year-old Luke Whitbeck, but families and insurers are picking up the astronomical cost.