If you’re trying to discover reasons for why drug prices go up or down, one of the best things to look at is supply and demand. A new federal antitrust lawsuit alleges that several generic drugmakers were colluding in an effort to protect market share and raise prices. To get a better sense of what was happening in the market at the time the alleged collusion took place, it helps to track a drug’s market share over time. Using Medicaid utilization data and other public datasets, we have now launched a new dashboard to provide a crumb trail for those looking to determine the market distribution of drug manufacturers as prices fluctuate.
CMS published their latest National Average Drug Acquisition Cost (NADAC) survey results today, and they've given us a lot to be thankful for! Applying the latest pricing changes to Medicaid's 2018 drug utilization mix results in $169 million of annualized savings on generic drugs. Moreover, we got both better "quantity" and "quality" out of this update. In other words, more generic drugs went down in price (quantity) and of the ones that went down, a lot more went down by a meaningful amount (quality).
It is well-known that competition in the generic manufacturer marketplace drives drug prices down considerably. Plaquenil, a brand-name drug that has been on the market since 1955, eventually saw generics enter the market almost a quarter of a century ago. By all accounts, generic Plaquenil – known as hydroxychloroquine – had become a very affordable drug at approximately 10 cents per pill. But FDA actions quickly dried up the supply of the drug, causing prices to balloon more than 2,500%. 46brooklyn’s newest drug pricing report examines how state Medicaid programs were impacted by this price spike, and how some states continued paying elevated rates even after the price came crashing back down.