Trump calls for FDA price check with drug prices in ads

May 17, 2018  Source: Ddu 169

A particular proposal regarding displaying drug prices in TV ads flummoxed pharma marketers and ad agencies following the unveiling of the drug-pricing agenda by President Trump. Marketers have been hounded with the whys and hows of the proposal even as the administration remains firm on its implementation.

HHS Secretary Alex Azar exhorted pharma companies to add drug prices to ads voluntarily. The emphasis was on honesty in charging the consumers and listing prices on ads.

FDA Commissioner, Scott Gottlieb, stated that his agency is analyzing ways and means to bring the price-tag policy to the execution stage. It is also looking at clearing possible legal hurdles which may prove to be an impediment to its implementation. A likely legal issue that might arise could be the unconstitutionality of the “compelled speech” imperative in the form of compulsory price disclosures.

Another possible problem that could exist outside the scope of the legal sphere could be the quantum of the price to be disclosed. It was acknowledged by the FDA Commissioner that the list price of the drug may not be the best option considering the extraction by consumers of discounts and rebates. However, it is hoped that the agency could explore better alternatives.

By editor