During a widely attended media briefing, physicians, biopharmaceutical leaders, and a brave cancer survivor, all expressed their strong opposition to the extreme drug pricing bill Congress is currently considering. They explained why allowing the government to set the price for lifesaving medicines will decimate the hope of curing cancer and other deadly diseases and why policymakers should start over with a new bipartisan approach that lowers costs and protects future innovation.
- Maura Bivens, a triple-negative breast cancer from Nevada
- Dr. Jean-François Formela, an investor in biotech startups and partner at Atlas Venture
- Dr. Kashyap Patel, a practicing oncologist and president of the Community Oncology Alliance
- Dave Ricks, a leader in biopharmaceutical innovation and CEO of Eli Lilly & Company
- Steve Ubl, president and CEO of PhRMA, which advocates on behalf of the country’s leading innovative biopharmaceutical research companies
The discussion reinforced the harmful impact the current partisan drug pricing bill would have on patients and innovation. You can watch the entire discussion here.
Here are a few key highlights:
Government price setting harms innovation
“Government price setting threatens the unique American innovation ecosystem that gives hope to patients with diseases like Alzheimer’s or cancer.” - Dave Ricks
"I’m opposed to allowing the government to set the prices of medications. We cannot sacrifice new drug discoveries or innovative treatments to save lives. Innovation saved my life.” - Maura Bivens
“It’s going to be very difficult for any sponsor of any new oncology drug to embark on all those multiple expensive clinical trials…You only have a few years to recoup your investment which is going to be very challenging.” – Dr. Jean-François Formela
Will exacerbate disparities in cancer care
“We already know that access to care is becoming an issue for a third of Americans...My biggest concern is that stifling innovation and combining that with access to care will make health disparities much worse.” – Dr. Kashyap Patel
“This bill really reverses progress in cancer care at the same time as the power of genomic medicine is unlocking nature’s secrets in a way that would make exploring that even more exciting.” – Dave Ricks
Doesn’t do enough to make medicines more affordable for patients
“Fewer new medicines is a steep price to pay for a bill that doesn’t do enough to make medicines more affordable. The bill saves the federal government $300 billion. And just $25 billion will go toward improving the Medicare Part D benefit. The rest goes to reduce the deficit and to provide a windfall to insurance companies.” – Steve Ubl
Congress and the Biden administration need to start over on the bill
“It’s time for Congress and the President to do what’s best for patients, abandon this partisan anti-innovation bill and start over with a new bipartisan approach that lowers costs and protects future innovation.” – Steve Ubl
You can watch the entire discussion here.
Learn more about how we can lower patient costs and protect access to medicines at PhRMA.org/BetterWay.