Drug companies in the US are getting an early lead on price increases at the start of the year. Prices of 250 prescription drugs, including the globally selling drug “Humira” have been increased.
This is despite the fact that the pharmaceutical industry is under pressure from US President Donald Trump to hold drug prices level. Trump’s administration says that it is working on a plan aimed at lowering the prices of medications for consumers.
During a White House meeting, President Donald Trump said he expected to see a drastic drop in costs. The meeting was attended by Health and Human Services(HHS) Secretary Alex Azar.
Compared to last year, the number of medicines whose price has increased is down by one third. According to data from Rx Savings Solutions, drug companies raised the prices of more than 400 medicines in 2017. Rx Savings Solutions helps employers seek lower cost prescription medicines.
Allergan, one of the wealthiest pharmaceutical companies in the US, increased prices on more than two dozen drugs by almost 10% including some high increases on generics.
GlaxoSmithKline raised the prices on 36 drugs. Hikma Pharmaceuticals raised the price of Morphine by 10% and its blood pressure drug Enalaprilat by 30%.
One of the reasons price increases happen often in the US is because the government does not exert price controls. This is unlike other countries where costs of medicines are directly or indirectly controlled by the governments.