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Will Washington Finally Act on Drug Prices?

With the impeachment inquiry dominating headlines for the foreseeable future, it may seem like an unlikely moment for a major legislative push to lower drug prices in Congress. But calls for relief garner broad public support, and both the House and Senate have spent months advancing their respective plans. Do they have a shot? Meanwhile, dozens of states have passed laws that aim to make drug prices more transparent. California recently enacted legislation targeting “pay-for-delay” schemes that keep generics off the market, and the state’s governor signed an executive order earlier this year to pool the state’s massive purchasing power on drugs. Can such state-level moves compensate for federal inaction if the competing bills put forward by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Sens. Charles Grassley and Ron Wyden stall out? This webinar will give an overview of the proposals and weigh in on the future of the battle to curb soaring drug prices.  

WHEN: Nov. 26, from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. PT / 2-3 p.m. ET

REGISTER: [Now closed]


Neeraj Sood is a professor and vice dean for research at the USC Price School of Public Policy and a founding member and senior fellow at the USC Schaeffer Center. His research focuses on pharmaceutical markets, health insurance, economics of innovation, Medicare and global health. He has published over 100 papers in peer-reviewed journals in economics, medicine, and policy, including JAMA, Quarterly Journal of Economics, Journal of Health Economics, Health Affairs, Journal of Policy Analysis and Management and Health Services Research. He has testified frequently on health policy issues and has been on expert committees for the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine. Sood was the 2009 recipient of the Eugene Garfield Economic Impact Prize, recognizing outstanding research demonstrating how medical research impacts the economy. He is on the editorial boards of the Journal of Health Economics, Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, and Health Services Research. Prior to joining USC, he was a senior economist at RAND and a professor at the Pardee RAND Graduate School.

Lynn Quincy is the director of the Healthcare Value Hub at the Altarum Institute. Her work encompasses a wide variety of health policy issues, focusing primarily on the areas of consumer protection, strategies that provide better value for health care dollars, and health insurance reform at the federal and state levels. In 2015, Quincy launched the Healthcare Value Hub, a new center that helps advocates and others address high health care costs, lack of transparency and uneven quality. Prior to joining Altarum, she held senior positions at Consumers Union, the policy and advocacy arm of Consumer Reports, Mathematica Policy Research, the Institute for Health Policy Solutions and Watson Wyatt Worldwide. She holds a master’s degree from the University of Maryland. 

Lev Facher is a Washington correspondent for STAT, reporting on the politics of health and life sciences. He has written extensively about the federal government’s response to the opioid crisis, the pharmaceutical industry’s influence on Capitol Hill, and federally funded biomedical research. Most recently, he reported on how a former pharma lobbyist has upended Trump’s drug pricing agenda. Facher earned an economics degree from the University of Michigan, where he worked as managing editor of The Michigan Daily. 

 Webinars are free and made possible by The Commonwealth Fund and the National Institute for Health Care Management Foundation. 

Presenters' slides:

1) For Prof. Neeraj Sood's slides, click here.

2) For Lev Facher 's slides, click here.

3) For Lynn Quincy's slides, click here.

Suggested reading

White House and Pelosi Part Ways on Relief for Drug Prices,” AP

It's hard to lower drug prices, if you don't know what they are,” by Neraj Sood, The Hill

Analysis of State-Level Drug Pricing Transparency Laws in the United States,” by Martha S. Ryan and Neeraj Sood, JAMA Network Open

Democrats’ new logic on drug pricing: Developing slightly fewer medicines is OK if it means lower prices,” by Lev Facher, STAT

How Joe Grogan, a former pharma lobbyist, upended Trump’s drug pricing agenda,” by Lev Facher, STAT

Pharma’s ‘come-to-Jesus moment’: The industry braces for a Pelosi speakership and Democrats’ drug pricing agenda,” by Lev Facher, STAT

The ‘Big Pharma’ candidate? As he runs for president, Cory Booker looks to shake his reputation for drug industry coziness,” by Lev Facher, STAT

 “‘Don’t be a Bernie Bro’: Inside conservatives’ brazen campaign to sabotage Trump’s signature drug pricing plan,” by Lev Facher, STAT

A Look at Drug Spending in the U.S.” by Pew 

Healthcare Value Hub’s Rx pricing supply chain infographic 

Healthcare Value Hub’s infographic on how manufacturers delay competition 

Healthcare Value Hub’s Drug Pricing Glossary

The Impact of Prescription Drug Rebates on Health Plans and Consumers,” by Charles Roehrig, PhD, Altarum

Advancing Legislation on Drug Pricing — Is There a Path Forward?” by Stacie B. Dusetzina, Ph.D., and Jonathan Oberlander, Ph.D., The New England Journal of Medicine, Nov. 28, 2019


The nation's top infectious disease specialist will join us for a conversation with national health reporter Dan Diamond of The Washington Post. We’ll talk about the evolving threat posed by monkeypox, the current state of the COVID pandemic, and broader lessons on how we respond to emerging diseases. Sign-up here!


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