Drug Prices In Ads Could Cause Sticker Shock For Consumers Forcing Pharma

first_img Two scientists behind Biogen’s rare disease treatment Spinraza won the richest award in the life sciences on Wednesday, splitting a $3 million prize and a turn on stage at a star-studded ceremony next month. C. Frank Bennett, a pharmacologist at Ionis Pharmaceuticals, and Adrian Krainer, a biochemist at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, picked up a Breakthrough Prize for their work discovering a treatment for the rare and deadly condition spinal muscular atrophy. The drug, developed by Ionis and marketed by Biogen, won Food and Drug Administration approval in 2016. (Garde, 10/17) Novartis AG on Thursday said it would pay $2.1 billion for Endocyte Inc., a U.S. company developing a new treatment for prostate cancer, the Swiss pharmaceutical giant’s latest move to double down on high-value prescription drugs. Endocyte specializes in so-called radiopharmaceuticals, a new class of drug that carries radioactive substances directly to cancer cells so they can kill tumor cells at close range. (Roland and Mancini, 10/18) Pharmaceutical marketers already follow a stack of rules when they advertise, which includes listing dangerous possible side effects to a sometimes unnerving length. Now a newly proposed requirement to disclose list prices for drugs on-screen during television commercials could add yet another headache for one of Madison Avenue’s most important categories. Health-care ad executives don’t expect a broad pullback in pharmaceutical advertising on TV, but they said the rule could create sticker shock among consumers and push drugmakers to rethink their marketing strategies. (Bruell, 10/17) Introducing ‘Pharma Cash To Congress’: Search and explore KHN’s new tool that lets you discover which lawmakers rake in the most money (or the least) and which pharma companies are the biggest contributors. Drug Prices In Ads Could Cause Sticker Shock For Consumers, Forcing Pharma To Tinker With Marketing Strategies Experts don’t predict the proposed requirement would cause a broad pullback of ad campaigns, but companies will have to make some tough, and possibly expensive, choices. Meanwhile, President Donald Trump hints at a big win for drugmakers with a big change to Medicaid’s rebate rule. Columbus Dispatch: New ‘Gag Rule’ Ban Is Expected To Lead To Saving On Prescriptions Stat: Gilead’s HIV Prevention Pill Can Greatly Reduce New Infections  This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. The Wall Street Journal: Proposed Rule Requiring Drug Prices In TV Ads Could Impact Marketing Strategies In other pharmaceutical news —center_img Stat: The Trump Administration Hints At New Drug Pricing Regulations  Stat: Breakthrough Prize Goes To Researchers Behind Biogen’s Spinraza Reuters: Express Scripts Covers Amgen, Lilly Migraine Drugs, Excludes Teva The White House on Wednesday provided the clearest evidence yet that, eventually, some drug makers might not have to cut Medicaid the best deal on prescription drugs. It would be a big win for drug makers, who say the current rules — which require every drug company to give Medicaid programs the lowest possible price, or “best price,” for any drug they sell — don’t give them the flexibility to test new payment ideas, like paying for drugs based on how well they work. (Florko, 10/17) Express Scripts Holding Co, one of the largest U.S. prescription benefits managers, will cover new migraine drugs from Eli Lilly and Amgen Inc, but exclude a rival medication from Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd after price negotiations with all three manufacturers. The decision represents a setback for Israel-based Teva , which is in the midst of a corporate restructuring and had hoped to capture a sizable share of the multibillion-dollar migraine market. Express Scripts is also taking steps to limit use of the Amgen and Lilly migraine drugs to patients it says are most likely to benefit from them. (Beasley, 10/17) The Wall Street Journal: Novartis To Buy Cancer-Drug Maker Endocyte For $2.1 Billion For the first time, a study has confirmed that using the HIV-prevention pill can effectively thwart the virus in uninfected men by a significant amount, a finding that patient activists argue should spur public health officials to more aggressively push for wider access to the medicine. By giving men the PrEP pill on a rapid and targeted basis, the HIV diagnosis rate fell by 25 percent in just one year, from 295 cases in the fall of 2016 to 221 cases the following year, according to the study, which was published in The Lancet HIV journal. (Silverman, 10/17) A bill sponsored by Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, and signed into law last week by President Donald Trump immediately outlaws such gag clauses, allowing consumers untold savings. The legislation expands on a similar bill in Ohio’s legislature that has been passed only by the House. The non-disclosure rules were imposed on pharmacies by many pharmacy benefit managers, which are companies hired by insurers to negotiate drug prices with manufacturers and the reimbursements paid to pharmacies for filling prescriptions. (Candisky, 10/17) last_img read more