Senate Health plan – biologics

I’m not going piece by piece in this thing for you, sorry. I’m going to say there’s a lot in this bill that bothers me, and I’ll probably get several posts out of that. This, in fact, is one.

There is one section that makes me want to scream. It’s sections 7001 and 7002, and by the title you think it’s to control the prices of and enhance competition in production of “biologics”. No.

First, “biologics” are what most of us call “drugs”. This portion is devoted to the drug development industry. On first and second and third read (it’s dense and I’ll say I still might be wrong) it appears to be setting up a… a protection racket for the drug developers. A new drug that’s pretty much the same drug gets to skip most of the tests AND YET gets all the patent and exclusivity protections started fresh. With flourishes and curlicues, no less. Every time I read it I find some other benefit given to the pharma companies.

And I have yet to find a “stop” element – a place that tells the company they can’t go further. Everything is an extension of what is already in place, not a curtailment of it.

Yeah, I’m not liking this section. If I were comfortable that the senate bill would cover a LOT of people presently uncovered AND bring prices under control I’d swallow it. Thing is, I’m not comfortable either of those is in place. I’m specifically looking for those two items and at present am having difficulty finding them. This makes the pharma handout worse.

More later, as I find it.


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