Pharma Goes All In Against California’s Ballot Initiative To Curb Drug Prices
“We’re fighting that tooth and nail,” said John Lechleiter, chief executive officer of Eli Lilly & Co.
Big Pharma Fights ‘Tooth And Nail’ Against California Drug Vote
Drugmakers are becoming increasingly vocal in fighting a California ballot proposition on drug prices, concerned that the more $100 million in funding raised by lobbies opposing the initiative won’t be enough to stop it. ... Known as Proposition 61, the initiative intends to bring down the cost of prescription drugs by prohibiting California state agencies, such as Medi-Cal and state prisons, from paying more than the price paid by the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs. While Medi-Cal, the state health program for the poor, already can negotiate with drug companies, the national VA typically gets the best deal. VA rates may be about 20 percent lower than Medicaid’s, according to Piper Jaffray analyst Joshua Schimmer. (Chen, 10/25)
California Voters Will Decide Whether To Cap Drug Prices Nov. 8
Public anger at perceived price-gouging by drugmakers has fueled calls for lawmakers to take action. State legislators in California tried, pushing two bills aimed at shedding more light on prescription drug pricing. Both of those efforts died before the end of the session. In California and many other states, however, legislators aren't the only ones with the power to make law. (Castellucci, 10/22)
Ad Against Proposition 61 Misleads On Costs For Veterans
The opponents of Proposition 61 have put more than $100 million behind its defeat. The measure would bar state government entities from spending more for medications than the lowest price paid by the Department of Veterans Affairs, which generally gets big discounts. Federal law mandates a 24 percent discount for the VA, but the discount is sometimes more, and some veterans’ groups worry that the VA would no longer be able to negotiate deeper discounts should Proposition 61 become law. They also warn that drug companies could simply compensate by raising prices. (Cadelago, 10/25)
As Feds Dither, Some States Are Moving To Curb Drug Prices
Despite widespread public furor over the soaring of prescription drugs and accusations of price-gouging against pharmaceutical firms, the federal government has to date failed to find a solution. Some states aren’t waiting around for it to deliver. California residents will vote on a ballot initiative, Proposition 61, on Nov. 8 that would ensure state agencies pay the same or less for prescription drugs as the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs. The federal agency gets a 24 percent discount off the list price, and often negotiates even steeper discounts on a drug-by-drug basis. (Gibson, 10/21)
And a look at another ballot initiative —
PolitiFact California: Tobacco Industry Misleads In Prop 56 'Doctor Advertisement'
Opponents of Proposition 56, California’s proposed tobacco tax increase, have raised more than $66 million to defeat the November ballot measure. Nearly all of that money has come from the tobacco industry and much of it has been spent on television ads criticizing the initiative... Would the measure really distribute the bulk of the revenue to "wealthy special interests" with no mandate to serve more patients? We decided to check the facts. (Nichols, 10/25)