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Drugmakers ordered to disclose prices in TV ads; Crazy about KRAS

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Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar with President Donald Trump at the White House on May 9.
Source: The Associated Press

Starting in July, when drug companies interrupt your prime-time TV watching with an ad for Humira or Xeljanz, they will have to disclose the list price of the medicine.

The Trump administration rolled out the long-awaited rule for pharmaceutical companies May 8.

Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar suggested during a May 8 media call that requiring list prices in TV ads could shame drug companies into lowering them.

"If you are ashamed of your drug prices, change your drug prices," he said.

Under the new rule, brand-name drugmakers must include in TV broadcast ads the list price for a 30-day supply of any medicine with a cost over $35 that is covered by the federal government's Medicare program for seniors and disabled Americans and Medicaid, which covers people with low incomes.

The drug industry itself will be required to report offending commercials that do not include prices.

Story: Drugmakers required to disclose list prices in US consumer TV advertising

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Story: Healthcare weakest amongst S&P 500 sectors in April

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Crazy about KRAS: Breaking down the hype of a hot new cancer target

A gene mutation dubbed "the worst" in cancer that was previously thought to be "undruggable" has researchers and pharmaceutical companies scrambling, as new human data set for release suggests a breakthrough in cancer therapy could be on the horizon.

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Rep. Donna Shalala, D-Fla.

Source: Office of Congresswoman Donna Shalala

From cabinet to Capitol Hill: Shalala wields authority in healthcare debate

Rep. Donna Shalala, the former cabinet member-turned lawmaker, remains an authority on the healthcare debate as the U.S. grapples with the best way to ensure affordable and accessible care for all Americans.

Medicare's merit-based physician payments fail to deliver savings, Congress told

Healthcare experts and industry representative told Congress on May 8 that while some recent reforms to the physician payment model have succeeded, others are adding administrative burdens to providers without generating expected savings.

Senators weigh tinkering with US patent laws to address drug pricing crisis

Witnesses cautioned lawmakers that tinkering with the U.S. patent system in an effort to control drug prices would not only affect biopharmaceutical makers, but other industries, like high tech, potentially jeopardizing those sectors' success.

Congress urges HHS to slow down implementation of proposed data-sharing rules

Two Department of Health and Human Services officials say two proposed rules will modernize the healthcare industry and increase competition, but a number of senators are concerned that implementation of the requirements is moving too fast.

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Federal judge blocks Medicare payment cuts to 340B drug program

A federal judge blocked a 28.5% Medicare payment reduction for the 340B drug program but did not vacate the policy because the changes could wreak "havoc" on the Medicare program.

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Innovent sells 19,000 units of PD-1 drug in China within three weeks of launch

Sales of blood cancer medicine Tyvyt, or sintilimab, totaled $9.9 million in the first quarter of 2019, according to a regulatory filing from Eli Lilly, Innovent's partner.

Regeneron seeks to sustain Eylea dominance with key approval in diabetes

Regeneron is bracing for Eylea competition in late 2019 — when the therapy goes off patent — and the company hopes the new diabetic market could keep it on track.

Trump, US health chief Azar eye Fla. drug importation plan to lower costs

President Donald Trump told Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar to work with Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis to refine the state's drug importation plan to ensure it will pass muster with safety requirements, the White House confirmed.

US FDA warns patients with Medtronic's pacemakers of rapid battery drain

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said certain Medtronic implantable pacemakers are at risk of the battery draining quickly and without warning.

Essential Healthcare is a weekly collection of critical developments across the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, healthcare provider, healthcare technology and medical equipment industries that draws on exclusive analysis and value-added content from the Healthcare News team at S&P Global Market Intelligence. Subscribe now to get Essential Healthcare delivered to your inbox every week.