FACT SHEET! – Rising Drug Costs


“Drug prices in the United States are too high and continue to skyrocket.” So begins a fact sheet released by the Campaign for Sustainable Rx Pricing, a non-partisan organization that seeks to inform the debate on drug pricing and to find bipartisan, market-based solutions to lower drug prices. Its members represent hospitals, physicians, nurses, consumers, health plans, pharmacists, and employers.

Among the most alarming facts: “Today, drug expenditures are nearly 20 percent of health care cost, and prescription spending is growing faster than any other part of the health care dollar.” American spending on prescription drugs jumped 13.1% in 2014 and another 12.2% in 2015, dramatic increases driven by an unprecedented 30.9% increase in spending on specialty medications.

Those same specialty medications are far outpacing the Consumer Price Index, with the category expected to increase to 44% of overall drug spending by 2017. Prices are rising on some common drugs, too. As the CSRxP fact sheet notes, “Four of the top 10 prescription drugs in the United States have increased in price by more than 100 percent since 2011.”

Among others, the factsheet details price increases by Pfizer Inc, which raised prices on 133 of its brand name products in 2016. The price of the pharmaceutical giant’s bestselling fibromyalgia drug, Lyrica, which accounted for over $5.17 in sales in 2014, jumped 51% over the past 3 years. Dramatic increases like this burden the healthcare system and have a disproportionate impact on self-funded employers.

Download the fact sheet here:

“The Facts About Rising Prescription Drug Costs”


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