Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Rapid Price Increases for Some Generic Drugs Catch Users by Surprise -

"Insurers can sometimes react to high drug prices by bargaining with manufacturers for better rates. But, Dr. Kesselheim said, those negotiations tend to focus on very expensive new products, like infused drugs to treat arthritis and some cancer treatments, where a good discount could save tens of millions a year.

"With cheaper drugs, insurers use simpler tools to discourage use and prod doctors to think about other options: They require physicians to fill out forms — like the one that landed on Dr. Lindenberg’s desk — and move the drug to a category that requires larger patient co-pays.

"If markets function, the current high price of digoxin might induce some more drug companies to begin selling it, which should in turn bring prices back down. But a few years of higher bills could be a strain for older patients, most of them on Medicare, who must contribute to prescription drug costs."

Yet another example, as if we needed another, as to why ESSENTIAL things like food, water, basic medicines, basic energies really shouldn't be left completely to "the market".

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