Average Rx drug prices spiked 10.9% last year
- According to research from Truveris, a research firm that tracks drug pricing, prescription pricing rose across the board in 2014, the WSJ reports. The degree of the cost spikes depended largely on therapeutic category—from 1.5% for generic medicines used to treat gastroesophageal reflux disease, to 30% for drugs used to treat Parkinson's disease and asthma.
- Truveris used a composite calculation combining data on brand, generic, and specialty drugs.
- Overall, generic drug prices were up 4.9%, but some were up much more than others. There was a 31.9% increase in cost in generic drugs used to muscle pain and stiffness, for example. The cost for generic drugs to treat inflammation rose by 31.7% and the cost for generic antibodies rose 11.8%. On the low end, the cost of generics to treat diabetes rose just 0.6% and the cost of generics used to treat allergies rose 0.1%.
The big question when it comes to drug pricing is always, "Why?" Some answers include the pharma industry's need to recoup the cost of drug development for rare diseases and cancers; inflationary pressure; and, on the generic front, quality-control issues.
Next question: Will it get better? Answer: Probably not, according to Truveris's CEO, who believes brand-name drug prices will most likely continue to increase 12% to 15% in the foreseeable future.