UPDATED 9:48 AM PT — Thursday, May 9, 2019
The secretary of Health and Human Services is calling out drug companies over the prices of their products as President Trump works to make drug prices more transparent.
In an interview Thursday, the Secretary Alex Azar said inflated drug prices are not the result of recovering costs. He said patients are still being gouged at the pharmacy counter.
Azar questioned when a patient should be seeing the price — at the point of advertisement or seeing the “sticker shock” at the pharmacy? He said there was no need for prices to increase as much as 20-percent every year.
“If the drug companies are embarrassed or afraid that patients will be scared off by their drug prices, reduce your prices — it’s that simple,” stated Azar.
His comments come as the Trump administration announced drugmakers must begin listing their prices in TV commercials starting in July.