Novartis freezes drug prices in the US

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Novartis is the newest drug firm to heed warnings from President Donald Trump over worth hikes.

The Swiss firm mentioned Wednesday that it will not elevate costs this yr in the US, days after its rival Pfizer got here underneath strain from Trump.

“We thought the prudent factor to do was to tug again on any additional worth will increase in 2018 and consider because the surroundings evolves,” Novartis CEO Vas Narasimhan informed Bloomberg on Wednesday.

An organization spokesman confirmed the CEO’s remarks to CNN.

Pfizer (PFE) mentioned final week that it will defer elevating costs on a number of medication after the president exhorted it to cut back prices. The announcement got here after Trump tweeted that he spoke with Pfizer’s CEO.

“Pfizer is rolling again worth hikes, so American sufferers do not pay extra. We applaud Pfizer for this determination and hope different firms do the identical,” Trump tweeted.

Novartis mentioned its administration had agreed final month that it would not comply with by means of with US worth will increase that had been deliberate for the third quarter.

“We work with governments and healthcare stakeholders in all of the international locations we serve, to help insurance policies to make sure the event of and entry to medicines that may enhance and lengthen our sufferers’ lives,” it mentioned in an announcement.

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Novartis is headquartered in Basel, Switzerland. It employs about 120,000 employees.

The pharmaceutical trade has been underneath assault lately due to the growing value of medicine. Trump has ramped up that strain. He promised to decrease drug costs throughout his presidential marketing campaign and after he took workplace.

Nevertheless, his administration did little till Might, when it rolled out its 44-page “blueprint” for growing competitors, lowering laws and altering the incentives for all gamers within the drug trade.

Whereas the plan accommodates some concrete steps the administration can take to decrease costs, it was criticized by trade observers as containing extra concepts for consideration than actions to take. Additionally, consultants mentioned it did not do sufficient to cut back the record costs of medicine.

— Charles Riley, Danielle Wiener-Bronner and Tami Luhby contributed reporting.

CNNMoney (London) First printed July 18, 2018: eight:06 AM ET



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