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specialty drugs

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The secretive world of pharmaceutical pricing is mired in opacity. To investigate how pricey drugs are impacting California’s budget, reporter Pauline Bartolone found she had to be creative, flexible and persistent in her data sleuthing.

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What looks like a straightforward framework to protect California’s budget from escalating drug costs has policy experts perplexed, and potential allies on the sidelines.

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Despite recent cost-cutting measures, California’s spending on pharmaceuticals has gone up, and so has the number of pricey drugs it is covering. It’s not clear state agencies have the means to balance drug cost pressures with the best interests of patients, taxpayers and public health.

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The specialty drug Orkambi, for cystic fibrosis, has a sticker price of $259,000 per year. What's driving these astronomical costs for specialty drugs? And can California's budget cope?

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“Racism in medicine is a national emergency.” That’s how journalist Nicholas St. Fleur characterized the crisis facing American health care this spring, as his team at STAT embarked on “Color Code,” an eight-episode series exploring medical mistrust in communities of color across the country. In this webinar, we’ll take inspiration from their work to discuss strategies and examples for telling stories about inequities, disparities and racism in health care systems. Sign-up here!

The USC Center for Health Journalism at the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism is seeking two Engagement Editors to serve as thought leaders in one of the most innovative and rewarding arenas in journalism today – “engaged reporting” that puts the community at the center of the reporting process. Learn more about the positions and apply to join our team.

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