News about Prescription Medicines

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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Publisher of leading informational Websites urges Senator Sanders to broaden investigation of drug pricing to Pharma practices against Personal Importation of Prescription Medicines

Open Letter to Senator Sanders calling for widening scope of Pharma investigation on high drug costs, Senator Bernie Sanders, High Prescription Drug Costs, RxforAmerican Health, TodaysSeniorsNetwork.com,

October 14, 2014
Senator Bernie Sanders
332 Dirksen Building
Washington, D.C. 20510
Dear Senator Sanders:
I am writing in my capacity as publisher of TodaysSeniorsNetwork.com and RxforAmericanHealth.blogspot.com to commend you on your and Representative Elijah Cummings’ investigation of the tremendous increase in the cost of generic prescription medicines.
Being aware of your past support of the rights of Americans to have access to safe, affordable personally imported brand-name prescription medicines from licensed, registered pharmacies in Tier One countries with standards of safety and efficacy that meet or exceed those of the U.S., I encourage you to expand the scope of your investigation to examine what many advocates for personal importation of prescription medicines believe to be a comprehensive strategy by Pharma to guarantee that the U.S. is a ‘safe haven’ for its predatory pricing practices, as noted in the link to this blog from RxFor AmericanHealth. (http://rxforamericanhealth.blogspot.com/2014/04/the-perfect-stormpharmas-agenda-to-make.html)
Ironically, while enacting extraordinary prescription drug price increases in the US, Pharma is now employing tactics against generics similar to what it has done to discourage personal importation by Americans of their medicines, such as attacks upon the efficacy and even the safety of generics in Canada (http://news.nationalpost.com/2014/09/14/brand-name-pharma-giants-attack-generic-firms-as-competition-grows/); or , in the US,  seeking the protection of a Congressional ‘umbrella’ to restrict competition (http://amac.us/amac-seniors-are-ultimate-victims-of-newest-attacks-on-generic-drugs-by-big-pharma/).  The irony: all the while, Pharma’s price increases actually spur price increases in Generics.  Pharma’s goal:  To eliminate any and all competitive options to safe, affordable prescription medicines.
As regards safe, personally imported prescription medicines, Pharma’s strategy includes a variety of initiatives over the years;  ‘certification’ amendments imposed on the HHS Secretary to deter legislation allowing personal importation passed by the Senate; collusion between the FDA and Customs to seize safe personally imported prescription medicines, and to  require the individuals ordering the prescriptions to sign an ‘admission’ that they knowingly participated in an illegal act and that they would not continue to do so (fortunately,  this was called to the attention of the Senate, and, a bi-partisan effort  in 2007 forbade the continuation of the practice); this did not discourage Pharma, which followed up with attempts to limit the freedom of the Internet by legislation such as the Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA) and the Stop Online Pharmacy Act (SOPA), both of which were fortunately turned aside;  PhRMA, the trade group for the Pharmaceutical Industry, recently joined in a law suit in Maine to overturn the will of the citizens of Maine whose legislature passed legislation to facilitate the purchase by the State’s citizens of brand-name prescription medicines from Canada, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom, but the court ruled that PhRMA had no standing and removed them from the suit, which is still awaiting a final outcome; and most recently, the Country is now in a position to witness a governmental agency ostensibly designed to protect the health and well-being of Americans (the FDA) actually destroying authentic brand-name medicines under Section 708 of the misnamed Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act (FDASIA) simply because the labels, which meet the requirements of the Tier One Country of Origin, are, according to the FDA, ‘mislabeled’ while PhRMA counsel calls for criminal actions against individuals personally importing their medicines, made in a statement in support of Section 708.
I hope you will agree that there is an overall strategy being pursued by Pharma, and that this should lead to expanded oversight and investigation of what can only be described as an efforts to make the US a safe haven for Pharma imposing upon Americans the highest prescription medicines in the world.  Thank you for your consideration of this letter.
Sincerely,

Daniel Hines
Daniel Hines
Publisher

Thursday, September 25, 2014

RxforAmericanHealth supports RxRights outreach for affordable medicines


Publisher's Note:  We are proud to have had the opportunity to work with Lee Graczyk, who has been an advocate for the right of Americans to have access to safe, affordable personally imported  prescriptions since he was a founder of the Seniors' Bus Trips to Canada in the 1990s.  Now, as lead organizer of RxRights.org, he continues to work against the predatory pricing practices of Pharma. We urge all Americans to support his efforts, not with funds, but by responding to his request for your stories about how you have been hurt by the highest prescription medicine prices in the world, whether or not you personally import your medicines,  


Greetings,

An article in the New York Times recently caught our attention, "A Drug Mule for the Medicare Set." It describes a woman's experience trying to get affordable medication for her 80-year-old mother from Canada. I'm guessing you might relate to this story, and that's why I'm writing.

We'd like to hear your response to this story. And we'd like to share it with policymakers. Millions of Americans can't afford their medicine. This issue deserves more attention during the election cycle. With your help, we can raise its profile.

Have you or your loved ones had to import prescriptions or make personal sacrifices due to out-of-control drug prices? If so, please send me an email with your personal story.

Thank you in advance for being willing to share your experience.

Best regards,

Lee Graczyk
Lead Organizer
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Contact RxRights:
advocate@rxrights.org
1-866-703-5442