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Rx Drugs

February 04, 2002 | Daily News

House Democrats see generic drugs as a key issue in both upcoming legislation on pharmaceutical drug user-fee reauthorization and Medicare. Rep. Sherrod Brown (D-OH), the top Democrat on the House Energy and Commerce, health subcommittee, said Democrats will consider attaching Hatch-Waxman drug patent reforms to the reauthorization of the Prescription Drug User Fee Act (PDUFA), but the party may also decide to tackle the reforms through other legislation such as the Greater Access for Affordable Pharmaceuticals (GAPP) Act or compulsory licensing.

February 01, 2002 | Daily News

In a major new development, the House Ways and Means Committee is expected to put the drug industry's multi-billion dollar advertising and marketing practices under the microscope this year as part of its efforts to pass a Medicare prescription drug benefit and reform package.

The committee is likely to focus on the direct-to-consumer (DTC) advertising of drug companies, and examine how pharmaceuticals are bought to the market. The scrutiny of the drug industry's advertising habits is a significant new focus in the Medicare reform debate, according to health care experts.

January 31, 2002 | Daily News

In an attempt to significantly enhance patient access to prescription drugs, HHS has approved a "radical" Illinois waiver request and crafted a Medicaid model program that administration officials say will provide states with a roadmap for delivering more cost-effective drug coverage.

January 31, 2002 | Daily News

A key beneficiary group will push harder this year for the inclusion of generics as part of a Medicare prescription drug benefit and also plans to educate its members on the benefits of generics. But the lobbying effort is expected to be fiercely opposed by brand-name manufacturers, who have already floated a document that criticizes the widespread use of generic drugs.

This showdown between AARP and certain drug manufacturers could play a key role in this year's debate on adding a prescription drug benefit to Medicare.

January 30, 2002 | Daily News

In a flurry of new proposals, the White House this week announced proposals to enhance prescription drug coverage for Medicaid beneficiaries, to increase Medicare+Choice funding, and to create two Medigap plans. The initiatives are aimed at providing immediate benefits to seniors as policymakers continue to seek a consensus approach on Medicare reform.

January 30, 2002 | Daily News

Two Senate Finance Committee Democrats are strongly objecting to speculation recently floated by a powerful pharmaceutical trade group that they are close to endorsing the "tripartisan" Medicare reform proposal that is favored by the Bush administration.

January 23, 2002 | Daily News

A Medicare advocacy group is calling for a congressional probe of drug pricing policies following the launch of a new drug discount card for Medicare beneficiaries by a leading pharmaceutical manufacturer.

The Pfizer Inc. initiative should be a "wake-up call" for Congress and the administration to explore why pharmaceutical companies are not offering discounts to all Americans, says Medicare Rights Center (MRC) President Robert Hayes.

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