Senator Collins Presses HHS to Reform Drug Rebate System - (The Wall Street Journal via NewsPoints Desk)

  • US Senator Susan Collins has asked the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to move ahead on a promise by US President Donald Trump to revise the drug rebate system, The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday.

  • In a letter to HHS, Collins noted that more than three dozen drugmakers collectively raised the prices on more than 200 products at the start of the year.

  • According to Rx Savings Solutions, the average price increase was 6.3 percent although several products received double-digit increases.

  • The drugs for which prices were increased on January 1 included AbbVie's Humira, Purdue Pharma's OxyContin and Novo Nordisk's Tresiba, Victoza and Levemir.

  • "I'm not prepared to say rebates should be abolished, and I don't like the idea of interfering with the marketplace but the marketplace is failing here," Collins remarked.

  • An HHS spokeswoman confirmed that the department received the communication, adding that Secretary Alex Azar has "made it clear that every actor—from manufacturers to benefit managers—involved in the current market is benefiting from ever higher prices—except patients."

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