Update: While stocks initially dipped on the speech, it soon became clear to the machines and the manipulators that, perhaps, there was not much there, there… and all aspects of healthcare soared…
Biotechs dipped and ripped…
Supply Chain dumped and pumped…
Pharmacies puked then exploded…
We are just going to leave this here for your consideration…
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Will President Trump accuse healthcare system CEOs of “getting away with murder” once again?
Senior administration officials have pre-empted Trump’s speech which proposes a sweeping effort to bring down US drug prices. Bloomberg reports that the blueprint, called American Patients First, is meant to increase competition and lower patients’ out-of-pocket costs. It would lift rules that prevent government programs from getting better drug discounts, push other developed nations with tighter price controls to pay more, create incentives to lower list prices and try to prevent drugmakers from gaming the system to extend their monopolies.
“One of my greatest priorities is to reduce the price of prescription drugs,” Trump said in a statement distributed by the officials.
As we detailed earlier, the plan is expected to:
“… aim to increase competition by ending ‘the gaming of rules’ by brand-name drug manufacturers that stymies the introduction of cost-saving generic and biosimilar drugs.
“… seek to improve negotiation within the Medicare program, but not by using the government’s clout to negotiate for Medicare as Trump has previously proposed. It would create unspecified incentives for lower list prices of drugs and would lower out-of-pocket spending by patients.”
Lobbyists and industry insiders think Trump will take particular aim at middlemen known as “pharmacy benefit managers” (PBMs) – who negotiate drug coverages, payments and rebates between insurers and drug makers.
Here’s what PBMs are watching most nervously: Whether Trump aims at narrowing the spread between high list prices and the secret, rebate prices insurers actually pay by limiting rebates to a percentage of the list price. –WaPo
Trump is expected to knock “unfair” practices by other countries which negotiate their drug prices. “Right now it’s very unfair what other countries are doing to us,” Trump remarked at a meeting with pharmaceutical executives in late January, accusing countries of “global freeloading,” and saying that it’s “very, very unfair” that the U.S. pays so much more for drugs.
At the January sitdown, Trump noted that the price for over-the-counter drugs such as aspirin, saying “The numbers we pay — I mean we have cases where, if I go to a drugstore and buy aspirin, the aspirin costs me less than what the United States pays for aspirin,” adding “So I can buy at a drugstore, the aspirin, for less money. … But we have to do something about that.”
White House Domestic Policy Council’s Katy Talento noted on Wednesday at an Independent Women’s Forum discussion that there’s “no ox that won’t be gored” in today’s 2 p.m. address.
“This is a fearless president and he doesn’t know or care why things have always been done…It’s not like your typical Republican authorizing committee that protects this model that they helped write for decades,” said Talento.
However, market participants are not expecting dramatic change… and the Nasdaq Biotech Index is jumping today…
“We expect more rhetoric than reform,” Height Securities analysts wrote in a note on Friday. “The President’s bark will be worse than his bite as he blames all parties within the drug supply distribution chain” for high prices.
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The White House released its outline for Trump’s “American Patients First” plan…