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“You go into a pharmacy to buy a $300 drug and you’re going to pay 300 bucks or some percent of that,” said Azar to FOX Business’ Maria Bartiromo on Friday. “But what you don’t know is that the drug company is giving a kickback or a rebate to the middle men who decide whether you have access to that drug or not.”
Johnson & Johnson became the first drugmaker, on Thursday, to take action. Taking the matter into their own hands they said they would start showing the list price of its prescription drugs in television ads.
|JNJ||JOHNSON & JOHNSON||135.94||-0.44||-0.32%|
But it was just a few years back that Mylan, the maker of the EpiPen, came under fire for price increases. The CEO, Heather Bresch, defended the company by blaming part of the $608 price tag on the middlemen. Azar said Trump’s proposal addresses these kinds of issues by completely overhauling how drug prices are decided by pharmacies.
“The president’s proposal will completely change how drug prices are done at the pharmacy level," he said. “We should see list prices go down and tens of billions of dollars of savings to American citizens when they walk into the pharmacy.”
Azar added that patients should begin to see the benefits of the discounts by early next year.