He also happens to be one of the most well-read pharma mavens I know. So — when he writes — we all should read. This is from his net-positive take on how Obamacare affects big pharma’s bottom line. Do go read the whole Forbes item (and welcome back from your earlier break man! Nice whiskers, Santa!):
. . . .The ACA, you may recall, will close the “donut hole” in the Medicare Part D prescription drug program by 2020. It’s already shrinking, as drugmakers discount the price of brand-name drugs for patients in the donut hole and Medicare picks up the cost of generic drugs. This is particularly significant, since the number of people on Medicare is climbing. GlobalData indicates that the elderly will make up 22 percent of the population by 2020, up from 19 percent today.
What’s more, the ACA puts in place extended patent protection for expensive biologics (brand-name medication), which was granted in exchange for creating a system to approve so-called biosimilars (generic drugs).
It is also worth remembering that, in exchange for supporting the Affordable Care Act, the White House struck a bargain with the pharmaceutical industry in which negotiations over prescription drug prices and so-called importation – which would allow Americans to purchase medicines from other countries – were taken off the negotiating table. . . .
That is true — and that is how one gets major reforms passed — with small concessions. The Tea Partiers ought to take note of that.