Pfizer Reverses Drug Price Hikes After Call with Trump and HHS Secretary

U.S. President Donald Trump gestures during a Make America Great Again rally in Great Falls Montana

The company, in a statement, said the price increases would effectively be postponed at least until the beginning of 2019 in order "to give the president an opportunity to work on his blueprint to strengthen the healthcare system and provide more access to patients". He said the company was "modifying prices" for roughly 10 per cent of its 400 medicines and vaccines, and that "list prices do not reflect what most patients or insurance companies pay".

Trump tweeted on July 9 that Pfizer and others "should be ashamed that they have raised drug prices for no reason". As Common Dreams reported, "rather than allowing the government to negotiate lower drug prices-a proposal backed by 92 percent of Americans-Trump's plan vaguely promises to "encourage innovation" in the private sector while pursuing "reforms" to Medicare to promote 'greater flexibility'".

If you are serious about this issue, tell your Republican pals in Congress to pass bills requiring Medicare to negotiate drug prices and enabling the importation of safe, low-priced drugs from Canada and other countries.

"I think we're going to have some big - some of the big drug companies in two weeks, and they're going to announce, because of what we did, they're going to announce voluntary, massive drops in prices", Trump said at the time.

Trump on Tuesday praised Read for his decision to delay the price increases.

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Pfizer on Monday defended the price increases, saying they would not lead to a net increase in prices for consumers.

On Monday, Trump tweeted harsh criticism of the company for raising prices. Those include Viagra, cholesterol drug Lipitor and arthritis treatment Xeljanz, according to Wells Fargo.

The administration in May introduced a blueprint aimed at reducing drug prices. The company will return these prices to their pre-July 1 levels as soon as technically possible, and the prices will remain in effect until the earlier of when the president's blueprint goes into effect or the end of the year - whichever is sooner.

Dean Mastrojohn, a Pfizer spokesman, said the company's "price list remains unchanged for the majority of our medicines".

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