28 pharma companies will hike prices in January after 2018 price freeze

In response to heightened pressure from the government and the public to lower drug prices, many of the world's largest pharma companies shelved price hikes in the U.S. in 2018. However, despite these promises, 28 pharma companies plan to hike drug prices in 2019, according to Reuters.

Under a California state law passed in 2017, drugmakers are required to notify payers in the state if they intend to raise the U.S. list price on any drug by more than 16 percent in two years. Documents reviewed by Reuters show that 28 pharma companies submitted documents in early November with plans to raise drug prices in 60 days or less.  

Several big-name pharma companies, including Novartis, GlaxoSmithKline, Amgen and Bayer, are among the drugmakers set to raise prices in January. Pfizer already announced plans to hike the price of 41 drugs in January.

The decision will pose a new challenge to President Donald Trump, who pledged to lower the costs of prescription medications in the U.S.

Throughout the last year, HHS proposed a number of rules aimed at lowering drug prices, including requiring drugmakers to disclose the list price of a drug in their television ads if it costs more than $35 a month and using an "international pricing index" to keep prices more in line with the lower prices paid in many other developed countries for the same drug.  

The proposed measures are not expected lower prices for consumers in the short term, and critics argue they are not enough to make a meaningful difference.

Read the full report here.

More articles on pharmacy:
Merck's global human health president to step down, advise CEO
Kroger launches discount program for out-of-pocket prescription drugs
Walgreens partners with Verily to cut healthcare costs

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