Pfizer hikes US prices 20% for over 100 drugs on January 1
Pfizer Inc, which plans a $160-billion merger with Ireland-based Allergan Plc to slash its US tax bill, on Jan. 1 raised US prices for more than 100 of its drugs, some by as much as 20 percent, according to statistics compiled by global information services company Wolters Kluwer.
Pfizer confirmed a 9.4 percent increase for heavily advertised pain drug Lyrica, which generated $2.3 billion in 2014 US sales; a 12.9 percent increase for erectile dysfunction drug Viagra, which had 2014 US sales of $1.1 billion; and a 5 percent increase for Ibrance, a novel breast cancer drug launched last year at a list price of $9,850 per month, or $118,200 per year.
Company spokesman Steven Danehy could not immediately confirm the remaining price increases, which were compiled by a unit of Wolters Kluwer Health and published in a research note by UBS Securities. US lawmakers, and presidential candidates, have in recent months stepped up criticism of US drug prices trends, driven in part by eye-popping price hikes from companies with recently acquired generic drugs. “Medicines are among the most effective and efficient use of private and public health care dollars,” Pfizer said in an emailed statement. “It is important to note that the list price does not reflect the considerable discounts offered to the government, managed care organizations, and commercial health plans and certain programs that restrict any increases above the inflation rate.” UBS said Pfizer increased prices by 20 percent for anticonvulsant Dilantin, hormone therapy Menest, angina drug Nitrostat, Tykosyn for irregular heartbeat, and antibiotic Tygacil. The analyst report said US prices were raised on a total of 105 Pfizer drugs.