President Trump has higher drug prices on the back burner.
The Washington Examiner reports:
Major drugmaker Merck announced Thursday it wouldn’t increase the average price for its products by more than the rate of inflation. Merck’s announcement came after major drug companies Novartis and Pfizer said they would delay their planned price hikes. President Trump has been trying to pressure drug companies to stop price hikes.
Merck said it will also lower the price of hepatitis C drug Zepatier by 60 percent. The treatment was approved in 2016 at a cost of around $54,600, which was below other major hepatitis C treatments like Gilead’s Harvoni which debuted at more than $80,000.
The company added it will reduce the price of several other medicines by 10 percent, but did not identify the products. Merck’s announcement comes as the Trump administration is trying to pressure drug companies to lower prices. Pfizer drew the ire of Trump in a tweet after news that it had raised prices for nearly 40 products.
The companies are giving the president’s prescription blueprint a chance to work. The news is welcome to so many seniors who are already struggling to pay the current prices. It’s also good news for the federal government, who purchases drugs through Medicare and Medicaid.
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