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What's Next for Drug Costs

 Chip Davis at Politico Briefing: What's Next for High Drug Costs?

3 Key Take-aways from the Politico #ProHC Briefing

Contact: Steve Arnoff 202.249.7113

Yesterday, Chip Davis, President and CEO, GPhA, spoke on a panel hosted by Politico called Politics and Prices: What's Next for Drug Costs? There were over 150 attendees and another 600 plus that joined over the live video stream to watch this important conversation.

Recently, there have been high-profile stories in the news about drugs costs. The panel brought together experts from Memorial Sloan Kettering, PhRMA, the Alliance of Community Health Plans and GPhA to give answers to pressing questions about rising drug costs and the health policy landscape.

Below are three main take-aways from the conversation:

1. Generics drive savings, not costs.

Generic drugs and biosimilars are the solution to high brand drug costs. Generics are 89% of prescriptions dispensed but only 27% of total drug costs, according to the 2016 Generic Drug Savings and Access in the U.S. report. The generic drug industry story is one of deflation – generic drug utilization is rising while generic costs are decreasing overall. Working with Congress, FDA and others we can take steps to enhance patient access to more affordable generic and biosimilar medicines.

Express Scripts Prescriptions and Price Index

2. Generic medicine competition keeps costs low for everyone.

Increasing generic competition is a proven long-term solution to combatting rising drug costs. GPhA supports five policy prescriptions, steps policymakers can take today, to spur competition and bring more treatments within reach for millions of Americans.

GPhA 5 Policy Prescriptions
Explore the five policy prescriptions

3. One size does not fit all.

It’s important to recognize the fundamental differences that distinguish the generic drug market from the brand market before making decisions. Policymakers should look at real dollars and spending, not just percentages, to understand that broad brush policy that treats brands and generics the same may invite unintended consequences, hindering generic competition and putting patient access and savings at risk.

To enhance generic savings and access for patients, payers and government, we need support from all sectors to remove barriers to generic competition. At the same time, let's have a frank conversation about the pharmaceutical sectors that account for the majority of patient costs.

Video of Briefing Hosted by Politico 
Watch a recording of the Nov. 29 live stream


View more photos from the event on Politico’s Facebook page.

Join the conversation now on Twitter using #ProHC 


About GPhA

GPhA represents the manufacturers and distributors of finished generic pharmaceuticals, manufacturers and distributors of bulk pharmaceutical chemicals, and suppliers of other goods and services to the generic industry. Generic pharmaceuticals fill 89 percent of the prescriptions dispensed in the U.S. but consume just 27 percent of the total drug spending. Additional information is available at Follow us on twitter: @gpha.