Drug Pricing Policy Watch

Drug pricing has become a hot-button political issue in American politics over the past several years, featuring prominently in the 2016 presidential campaign, and remaining in national news in the early days of the Trump Administration. The primary focus of this blog will be to track the progress of major pieces of state drug pricing legislation and related bills, and to highlight certain key features of these proposals as they evolve through state legislatures.  In addition, we will address noteworthy federal legislative developments and corporate pronouncements related to prescription drug pricing, such as commitments by major drug manufacturers on price increases and transparency.

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On October 9, California Governor Jerry Brown signed SB 17, legislation mandating advance notice and price transparency reporting for drugs experiencing greater than 16% increases in WAC over three calendar years and new drugs introduced at a WAC above the Medicare Part D specialty drug threshold.  The legislation will take effect January 1, 2018, although the reporting requirements to the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development will begin in the first quarter of…
After a slow-down during the summer recesses, action on the drug price transparency front is beginning to increase as we enter the fall season.  Here are a few states to watch in the coming months: California California’s price transparency legislation, SB 17, passed the legislature on September 13, and now goes to Governor Jerry Brown for his signature.  The legislation had passed the Senate by a 28-10 vote on May 30, and the Assembly…
We recently wrote about the newly enacted Nevada drug price transparency law here.  The law requires manufacturers of prescription diabetes drugs to disclose certain drug cost information to the state Department of Health and Human Services (“Department”).  In addition, the law imposes several unique reporting requirements on non-profit patient advocacy groups and pharmaceutical sales representatives.  We expected that these reporting requirements would garner some attention and, likely, some opposition.  We were correct. On September…
California’s drug price transparency legislation, SB 17, passed the State Assembly on September 11 by a vote of 66-9.  The bill included several amendments to the version of the bill that passed the State Senate at the end of May.  The State Senate then passed the amended legislation on September 13.  Among the most important amendments were changes to “triggers” for price reporting, and for advance notice requirements relative to WAC increases. SB 17…
Three pieces of Massachusetts pharmaceutical pricing legislation are set for a hearing before the legislature’s Joint Committee on Healthcare Financing at 11:00 AM on July 11.  S. 652, sponsored by Sen. Mark Montigny, would impose strict reporting requirements on manufacturers of covered drugs, while empowering the state Health Policy Commission (HPC) to annually identify drugs with prices “excessively higher than justified,” and authorizing the Attorney General to bring consumer protection actions against manufacturers charging…
Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval recently signed into law a drug price transparency bill, SB 539.  The law primarily concerns price transparency measures for prescription diabetes drugs, but also imposes reporting requirements on nonprofit patient advocacy groups and pharmaceutical sales representatives that we’ve yet to see enacted in any other state. First, the law requires nonprofit patient advocacy groups to annually compile a report disclosing any payment, donation, subsidy or anything of value received from…