U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin is proposing much greater transparency for drug industry pricing policies. The Wisconsin Democrat says the case of skyrocketing Epipen prices is just one example of why that’s needed. “Pfizer raised prices on 133 of its brand name products in the U.S. this year,” Baldwin said.
Baldwin has introduced a bill requiring drug makers to tell the Department of Health and Human Services why any price hike of more than ten percent justified at least a month before the increase.
“If nothing’s changed with the drug but they’re jacking up the price, we deserve to know answers,” she said. “Especially as taxpayers are footing the bill when programs like the VA and Medicaid and Medicare cover the prescription drugs costs,” she said.
Companies would have to disclose spending on research and development, manufacturing, marketing and advertising spending on the drug, as well as profit information, under terms of the Fair Accountability and Innovative Research Drug Pricing Act. Baldwin is co-sponsoring the bill with Arizona Republican, Senator John McCain.
Outrage ensued earlier this year when the price of the EpiPen, which treats severe allergic reactions, increased to more than $600.