The Public Will Be Shocked to Know How Much Their Drugs Really Cost… - Families Usa Skip to Main Content
10.15.2018 / Press Release

The Public Will Be Shocked to Know How Much Their Drugs Really Cost…

Washington, D.C.—Today, the Trump administration announced new proposed regulations to require drug manufacturers to include the list price for some of their products in direct-to-consumer television advertising. Specifically, this proposed rule would apply to drugs with a list price of $35 or more for a typical 30-day regimen or for a typical course of treatment.

Following is the statement from Frederick Isasi, JD, MPH, executive director of Families USA:

“Today’s announcement is a welcome step to rein in the cost of prescription drugs. People will be shocked to know how much their drugs really cost…This policy will focus public attention on the abusive prices charged by many pharmaceutical manufacturers.

“Currently in the United States, there is very little connection between the cost of a drug and the true benefit the drug may provide to patients. For example, a new drug to address high cholesterol may be no better or even worse than a drug that’s been on the market for decades, works well, and is available at a generic price. Today’s announcement allows the public to better assess the value of a new drug—that is: is it really worth the price?

“No doubt drug companies will push back on the policy arguing that the price being reported in the advertisement isn’t really what a patient will end up paying. That’s a pretty disingenuous argument since drug companies set-up the complex payment process, which hides from patients and providers the astronomical prices pharmaceutical companies charge. The “list” or wholesale acquisition cost is a good starting point to allow consumers to have a sense of the magnitude of what they will pay.

“And remember, rapidly-escalating drug costs impact people who may not even use prescription drugs because these costs are included in calculating annual health insurance premiums for everyone including taxpayers through government support for Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP, and other health programs.

“Families USA continues to focus its efforts on policies that reduce the underlying cost of drugs. We hope that this announcement will be followed by policies that also directly tackle the persistent problem of unconscionably high drug prices.”