- Has it finally realized that rising prescription medicine costs have created a national awareness by Americans of the harmful impact of the predatory pricing practices of Pharma upon their finances, their health and well-being?
- Is it finally willing to accept the responsibility and opportunity created by a Maine Circuit Court ruling earlier this year that set aside a state legislature action that would have merely extended a practice of Maine Citizens for years—personally importing safe, affordable prescription medicines from Canada, Australia, New Zealand and The United Kingdom—a decision made not because the medicines were unsafe or even that personal importation was illegal, but because it is Congress’ responsibility and is within its authority to determine how personal importation should be implemented, an issue that it has favorably considered many times by members acting on the ‘reservoir of good will’ towards personal importation?
- Is it finally convinced that Pharma will stop at
nothing to justify price increases for specialty medicines that, while
admittedly creating much-needed cures, threaten the very stability of our financial system, the health care system, and present the specter of rationing?
o Pay and Delay to protect generics from entering the market?
Purchasing products from other companies and then raising the prices?
o Claiming extraordinary R&D investments when in reality a high percentage of the ‘new’ medicines are created through grants to University laboratories from the National Institute of Health, a governmental and tax-payer-funded entity?
- Is it finally convinced that prescription drug prices are indeed a major driver of health care costs, despite what some so-called experts have pooh-poohed as not possible because the ‘price’ of medications is ‘small’ and there would be no benefit from a major reduction of prescription medicine prices?
- Is it finally convinced that a medicine that is ‘unaffordable’ is equally indeed ‘unavailable’, and that this is the reason that as many as 55 million Americans fail to adhere to their prescribed regimen of taking their medicines simply because they cannot afford them, and does it accept responsibility for the likely harmful consequences of this?
- Is it even vaguely aware of the potential for abuse of Section 708 of the Food Drug Administration Safety Innovation Act (FDASIA) which says a drug may be considered ‘illegal’ by the FDA because of a slight difference in labeling even though it is a perfectly safe, valid brand-name medicine that is the same as the medicine sold in the US at prices at prices as much as 60 percent higher, and will be subject to seizure and destruction?
Tuesday, May 5, 2015
Time for A Congressional Caucus to support Congress moves on Personal Importation
Publisher’s Note: In this post, we applaud the introduction of bills in Congress in support of personal importation, while questioning the breadth of Congressional knowledge of the extent of the harmful consequences of protecting the safe haven provided in the US for the highest prescription prices in the Industrial World. We continue our call for an Rx Bill of Rights for Americans, and urge that Congress form a Congressional caucus for Personal Importation as a first step to ensure that the vast numbers of Americans adversely affected by Pharma pricing have a voice in shaping health policies and continue to utilize the health and fiscal benefits made possible by personal importation.
Some simple questions for Congress:
Now, Congress has once again introduced two bills—S.122, co-sponsored by Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), and HR 2228, sponsored by Representative Chellie Pingree (D-ME 1) Dana Rohranbacher (R-CA 48)
The bills are designed to allow the personal importation of safe, affordable medicines from Canadian pharmacies.
The chances of passage are slim to none according to https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/114/hr2228 which gives each bill a less than four percent chance of passage, leading us to our list above of questions for Congress.