State Level Action in Response to ICER’s Unsupported Price Increase Report

January 18, 2021

In ICER’s latest report on Unsupported Price Increases (UPI), we determined that 7 of the 10 costliest US drug-price hikes in 2019 lacked new evidence of a previously unknown clinical benefit. Even after accounting for rebates, the unsupported price increases on just these 7 drugs cost Americans an additional $1.2 billion more than what they would have spent that year if the prices had remained flat. Dr. David Rind, our Chief Medical Officer, explained:

“Thanks in part to increased public scrutiny on annual price hikes, higher pharmaceutical rebates, and an uptick in generic drug utilization, average net prices on brand-name drugs have remained relatively stable in the US over the past two years. However, there remain many high-cost brand drugs that continue to experience significant annual price hikes, even after accounting for their rebates. Even more concerning, several of these treatments have been on the market for many years, with scant evidence that they are any more effective than we understood them to be years ago when they cost far less. As state lawmakers continue to pursue legislation that aims to limit drug-price increases when there is no clinical rationale, we hope our UPI reports continue to provide an explicit and independent approach to evaluate the evidence. If new data emerge that show a treatment may be more beneficial than what was previously understood, perhaps some level of price increase is warranted. For seven of the ten high-cost drugs we profiled in this year’s report, however, we found that the price increases lacked such justification.”

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