Lucy, Charlie Brown and the Football: The Drug Companies

This is from the New York Times:

Eager to have a strong voice in the health care debate – and head off more draconian demands….. the pharmaceutical industry [has pledged] to contribute $80 billion in drug discounts and other savings over the next 10 years as a significant breakthrough on the road to health care reform.

The deal was negotiated in private among the industry, Senator Max Baucus, chairman of the Finance Committee and a crucial figure in shaping health reform, and the White House.

[However,] the Congress and the public should see these proposals as an opening bid and not the final word.

Comments (5)

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  1. Ken says:

    The drug companies are more naive than Charlie Brown. I bet they got nothing in writing.

  2. Joe S. says:

    I bet they don’t even have it on tape.

  3. Tom H. says:

    Whatever they have, I bet it’s not notarized.

  4. Vicki says:

    Whatever bad things happen to the drug companies, they will undoubtably deserve. Unfortunately it’s all the rest of us who will ultimately pay the price.

  5. Devon Herrick says:

    The savings Max Baucus (Senate Finance chairman) hopes to achieve from drug maker discounts will prove to be illusory. The combination of modest deductibles and a coverage gap (i.e. donut hole) in Medicare Part D was designed to make the plans both affordable and beneficial to enrollees with a broad range of prescription drug needs. Part of the agreement requires drug makers to pay half the cost of name brand drugs for seniors throughout the Part D coverage gap. This will have the effect of making seniors less likely to switch to generic drugs. Since the government ultimately subsidizes about 75% of the cost of Part D plans, anything that reduces seniors’ incentive to substitute cheaper drugs will ultimately drive up the cost for taxpayers.