Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (April 5, 2019)

Pharmaceutical pricing appears to be one of the very few areas in which an equitable growth agenda can be advanced at the federal level over the next two years: CPPC: How Rebate Walls Block Access to Affordable Drugs: "The company that manufacturers the older drug can "bundle" its rebates for all those prescriptions and use it as a weapon. Some drug companies are using the large group of rebates, also known as a 'rebate wall', as a negotiating tactic-they demand that health plans not favor or exclude newer medicines from their formularies, even if the newer medicines lead to better outcomes. One example of this problem are when Johnson & Johnson used rebate walls to protect its drug Remicade and stifle competition from Pfizer's Inflectra, a lower cost biosimilar drug.... How can this be fixed? One possible solution: the Trump administration has announced a proposed rebate rule that eliminate the anti-kickback safe harbor that is currently applied to rebates. Another idea would be indication-based pricing, which is requiring prices and rebates to be negotiated for each drug and not bundled together. And as we mentioned earlier, the Federal Trade Commission could and should forbid drug manufacturers from erecting rebate walls...