PhRMA, pressed on all sides by critics of its members’ insulin-pricing policies, on Thursday made its public pitch to be part of the solution and not just the problem.
“The status quo must change,” said the group’s President and CEO Stephen J. Ubl. “America’s biopharmaceutical companies are committed to addressing patient affordability challenges and to changing the incentives in the supply chain so that more of the $166 billion on rebates and discounts given to middlemen help lower patients’ costs at the pharmacy counter.”
Drug companies—in particular, Indiana-based giant and PhRMA member Eli Lilly—have been heaped with scorn in recent months as Democrats and Republicans take aim at rising drug and biologic prices. Ubl said PhRMA’s member companies are committed to “market-based solutions” to address diabetes, the seventh-leading cause of death in the U.S., causing more than 80,000 fatalities per year.
But PhRMA says help is on the way: Member companies have some 167 medicines in the pipeline for either type 1 or type 2 diabetes, including 77 treatments for type 2, 32 for type 1 and 68 for diabetes-related problems, such as chronic kidney disease, blindness and diabetic nerve damage.