This month, RADAR on Specialty Pharmacy, wrote an article on drug importation titled “HHS Importation Efforts Move Ahead, but Questions Remain”. As part of the article, I was interviewed. Below is an excerpt.
High drug prices have been in the news for a few years, catching “the ire of public opinion and politicians,” observes Jason Shafrin, Ph.D., a health economist and senior director at Precision Health Economics. A Kaiser Family Foundation poll from April 2017 showed broad support across Democrats, Independents and Republicans for Canadian drug importation. “In practice, however, importing drugs from Canada is not a workable solution,” he tells AIS Health. “In the short run, importing drugs from Canada will lower prices for some Americans. However, the Canadian market does not have enough drugs to meet U.S. needs. The population of all of Canada is less than the population of California. Further, the total U.S. pharmaceutical market is 20 times as large as is Canada’s. Even if only 40% of U.S. prescriptions were filled by imports from Canada, the Canadian drug supply would be exhausted in 118 days.…The Canadian government has its own challenges meeting demand for pharmaceuticals for its own citizens, let alone the U.S.”
There is much more of interest in the article. Please do take a look if you subscribe to RADAR on Specialty Pharmacy.