The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) has reportedly issued a statement in opposition to calls for drug prices to be more clearly disclosed to the public, claiming that doing so would be “misleading.”
“Just including list prices is not sufficient,” is the argument being made by PhRMA CEO Stephen Ubl.
Since drug list prices “rarely reflect what consumers actually pay through insurance,” explains Breitbart.com, publishing honest drug price information “could discourage patients from seeking needed medical attention.”
PhRMA is proposing an alternative method of price disclosure that involves embedding drug advertising links that redirect potential customers to pages explaining a “drug’s list price, an expected range of possible patient out-of-pocket costs and financial support that is available to help consumers pay for their drugs.”
HHS Secretary Alex Azar chastises Big Pharma, says “real transparency” is needed
But is this enough? Not according to Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar, who called PhRMA’s alternative proposition an attempt to avoid “real transparency.”
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“The drug industry remains resistant” to honestly disclosing actual drug prices, he stated, “including the sky-high list of prices that many patients pay.”
“So while the pharmaceutical industry’s action today is a small step in the right direction, we will go further and continue to implement the president’s blueprint to deliver new transparency and put American patients first,” Azar added.