Pharma and Drug Prices

The Trump administration has proposed a rule that would require companies advertising drugs to provide the list prices of those drugs in their advertising—including their television advertising.  Big Pharma is opposed, and wants instead to be left to voluntarily provide pricing information by having links in their advertising that would guide folks to a separate Web site.

I sympathize with Big Pharma on this. Government regulation already is out of hand; the Trump administration is reducing that, and this is an unnecessary addition.

There is an alternative.

The FDA could compile a list of drug list prices; region-by-region retail prices at places like Walgreens, CVS, Walmart, amazon (note that this is not an exhaustive list of retailers); and the tier within which each drug sits.  This list then could be made available on the FDA’s Web site home page above the fold.

This more central source, in addition to encouraging competition among drug companies, would encourage more competition among retailers.

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