Officials Address ‘Sky Rocketing' Drug Prices

Medical officials along with pharmaceutical company representatives spent Tuesday morning discussing ways to reduce what some call “skyrocketing” prices for prescription drugs.

"I think what we need to do is step back and look at how the system historically covered medicines," said Vice President of State Policy PhRMA Tara Ryan.

At the forum, officials discussed how high costs for medicine creates financial strain for patients.

“More and more of the cost is being shifted to patients and they’re seeing more and more out of pocket,” said Ryan.

Jim Corcoran said he uses prescription drugs.

“It’s like $325. But I have insurance so it covers it. But it’s still high,” said Corcoran.

Pfizer representatives said the pricing for drugs is a formulated process.

“We usually put together a team that works on pricing and literally goes out and talks with hundreds of physicians and they give us how this new drug may fit into the regiment,” said Thomas Brownlie, the director of United States Policy for Pfizer, Inc. 

According to The Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease, in 2015 2.2 million people in Connecticut had at least 1 chronic disease. Conditions projected to cost more than $440 billion for those affected by 2030. A price tag medical officials said can be reduced by patients switching to generic pills and medicating when instructed.

“If we can get them to take those generic medications, we can reduce health care costs," said vice president of CVS Health Dr. Troyen Brennan.

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