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Drug Prices Jump 3.8% in Q1

April 28, 2015 – According to the Truveris National Drug Index, prices for branded, specialty, and generic drugs rose a combined 3.8% in the first quarter of 2015.

Analyzed by category, branded drug prices jumped 5.7%, specialty drugs rose 2.5% and generic drugs increased 1.4% between January and March 2015. The increases follow those reported for calendar year 2014, in which branded, specialty and generic medications increased 14.8%, 9.7% and 4.9%, respectively, and 10.9% combined overall.

The index also points to infertility (12.2%), menopause (8.8%) and hormone deficiency (8.5%) as conditions that saw the highest drug price increases, taking into account composite calculations of brand, specialty and generic medications. Generic drugs for menopause notably spiked 11.1%, increasing at a higher rate than the composite calculation.

“Prescription drug prices continue to rise at a rate that makes it increasingly difficult for businesses to keep the costs of employee benefits in check,” said Bryan Birch, Chairman, President and CEO of Truveris. “This necessitates that benefit plan managers act now to reevaluate benefit plan designs for 2016, or contemplate stop-loss insurance to cover this mounting liability.

The Truveris National Drug Index (NDI) is the only prescription drug price index in the U.S. measuring the average price of prescription drugs, driven by the most commonly utilized prescriptions. Calculated monthly, it provides a holistic, accurate measurement of the prices paid by private insurers, self-insured organizations, government, unions and uninsured patients.


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