Majority of U.S. Residents Support More Federal Prescription Drug Price Regulation, Survey Finds
About 65% of U.S. residents support more federal regulation of prescription drug prices, and 51% support regulations on prescription drug advertisements, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation survey released on Thursday, the AP/Las Vegas Sun reports. The survey, which had a margin of error of plus or minus three percentage points, included interviews with 1,200 adults in the first week of February.
According to the survey, 74% of respondents attribute recent increases in prescription drug costs to profits by pharmaceutical companies and cost of marketing and advertising, compared with to 22% who attribute the increases to the cost of research and development (AP/Las Vegas Sun, 2/24). The survey found that 46% of respondents support more federal regulation of prescription drug prices, regardless of whether they heard that investment in research and development of new medications would decrease (Reuters, 2/24).
In other recent Kaiser survey data, about 69% U.S. residents cite high profits by pharmaceutical companies as a very important contributor to recent increases in health care costs, more than any other factor. According to the Newark Star-Ledger, the survey indicates a "growing suspicion" among many U.S. residents about the pharmaceutical industry that is "repeatedly underscored by debates over prices, drug safety and promotional spending by companies." Only 14% of survey respondents had a very favorable opinion of pharmaceutical companies.
About 77% of survey respondents said that they have confidence in the ability of FDA to ensure prescription drug safety, although more than 25% said that they have less confidence than in the past, the survey found (Silverman, Newark Star-Ledger, 2/25).
The survey is available online.