Bipartisan effort underway to lower prescription drug prices

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American consumers could see a decrease in prescription drug prices in the future. 

Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry has joined with 45 other attorneys general in a bipartisan effort to lower prescription drug prices. 

In October 2017, Connecticut Attorney General George Jepsen and 45 other attorneys general asked a federal court to expand the states’ existing lawsuit against the generic drug industry. 

The new filing increases the number of drug manufacturer defendants from six to 18 and the number of drugs from two to 15.   

The nearly 300-page document alleges the drug companies conspired to restrain competition and raise prices on 15 generic drugs. 

“One of the most elusive things in our health care system over the last few decades has been the rising cost of health care as a whole and sometimes people, especially our citizens out there, scratch our heads saying ‘why are prescription drugs costing us so much’,” adds Attorney General Landry. 

Attorney General Landry says the generic pharmaceutical industry accounts for almost 88% of all the prescriptions written in the U.S. 

He says it’s a 100 + billion dollar industry that bears responsibility for rising prescription drug prices. 

“General Jepsen and his team found that there were bad actors colluding to insure that there was a trend of high prescription costs in the generic field,” says Attorney General Landry. “Basically, what you hear from General Jepsen in the nuts and bolts of it is that the generic pharmaceutical industry created kind of like a cartel under which they divided market share and fixed prices.” 

According to Attorney General Jepsen, executives and sales representatives within the generic drug industry, exchanged information about prices. 

The evidence compiled is based on emails and text messages which show executives in different companies communicating with one another. 

“These calls tend to bunch up immediately before or shortly before price spikes occur,” says General Jepsen. “This is literally costing consumers taxpayers insurers corporations businesses billions and billions of dollars a year.” 

Both Generals Landry and Jepsen say they can’t speculate when the cost of prescription drug prices will be lowered. 

General Jepsen thinks 2019 will be a big year in terms of exposing how the industry works.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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