Former pharma CEO: Political interference is 'worst solution' to high drug prices

Former Schering-Plough CEO Fred Hassan told CNBC that the "worst solution" to high drug prices is political interference.

Despite talk about targeting drug prices through political policies, the Trump administration has yet to craft an intervention — Mr. Hassan prefers it this way.

"The worst solution to all this is to let politicians and bureaucrats get involved with pricing because they really don't know the subject very well and it is a very complex subject," Mr. Hassan told CNBC.

Mr. Hassan, currently the managing director of a U.S. private equity firm, argues instead that self-management and self-discipline by the pharmaceutical industry are the solutions to reign in the skyrocketing drug costs.

In particular, he argues that the best way to bring prices down is to introduce new drugs into the market to increase competition.

Currently approximately a third of medications do not have a generic and "problems occur where a drug stays exclusive for too long," Mr. Hassan told CNBC.

Mr. Hassan also cited examples of solid leadership skills and self-management by executives to halt increasing drug prices. He applauded Allergan CEO Brent Saunders' decision to establish a social contract with patients, which is a promise to ensure innovation, access and responsible pricing ideals.

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