Drug Industry Prepares for 2019 ‘Doomsday Scenario’
Health Care

Drug Industry Prepares for 2019 ‘Doomsday Scenario’


Nancy Pelosi recently gave the pharmaceutical industry a taste of what might lie ahead if Democrats win control of the House in 2019. When Pelosi with the board of directors of PhRMA, the drug industry lobbying group, in July, she “spoke in detailed terms of a federal statute that allows the U.S. government to effectively strip drug companies of exclusive licenses to some blockbuster medicines,” STAT’s Lev Facher reports. He adds:

“The boardroom ambush from Washington’s most powerful Democrat could prove the first of many such moments for drug manufacturers, which have come under fire from the White House and lawmakers from both parties in the past two years. Interviews with drug industry lobbyists and Democratic aides across the Capitol suggest the same: that the wing of Pelosi’s party outlining an ambitious agenda to combat high drug costs could turn 2019 into PhRMA’s doomsday scenario.”

Facher outlines a couple of other possible Democratic steps on drug prices:

  • Allowing Medicare to directly negotiate prescription drug prices.
  • Installing a “price-gouging enforcer,” who would track drug companies and fine ones that increase prices excessively.

For more on the July meeting “intended as a ‘come-to-Jesus’ moment for the industry,” the Democrat’s drug pricing agenda and a look at which Democrats might control key House committees and subcommittees, read Facher’s full story.