❝ A casual observer of April’s House Energy and Commerce subcommittee hearing might think insulin prices just go up by themselves.
After all, the key industry executives filed opening statements to the congressional panel outlining patient-assistance programs, coupons and discounts — a range of price reductions that might make one think this life-or-death diabetes medication is easily affordable to the patients who need it….
❝ In fact, the price of insulin nearly doubled from 2012 to 2016 alone, triggering national headlines about the resulting hardships — sometimes deadly — suffered by people with the Type I-version of the condition who are left to ration insulin because it is too expensive for them to use as prescribed.
❝ The three drug manufacturers that make insulin — Eli Lilly, Novo Nordisk and Sanofi — joined three pharmacy benefit managers — CVS Caremark, Express Scripts and OptumRx — to testify before the Oversight and Investigations panel at its second hearing probing the corporate maneuvers behind the skyrocketing costs.
They disagreed a lot. All that counted was whose lies were the most believable. For years, no one has owned more members of Congress than Big Pharma. Giving a minimum of $15,000 a year to anyone elected to Congress. House or Senate. Big enough player? You get more. A lot more.
“In 2009, PhRMA spent about $25 million lobbying the government, Bloomberg said.
The trade association spent $6 million in the fourth quarter of 2018 and $10 million in the third, as it lobbied the Trump administration and federal government over a myriad of policies…”
“CNN said the pharmaceutical and healthcare sector spent $194 million lobbying the government in 2018. That amount does not include the lobbying efforts of PhRMA…”