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Newly released CMS drug pricing data reveals continued generic drug pricing distortions

Newly released CMS drug pricing data reveals continued generic drug pricing distortions

Last week, we were met with a delightful surprise as we were perusing through the CMS website and discovered an out-of-the-blue drug pricing data update just begging to be downloaded. The hidden treasure was the freshly-updated CMS State Utilization database, which provides quarterly drug pricing data that shows what state Medicaid programs are spending on prescription drugs, providing an excellent window into the price-setting practices of the prescription drug supply chain. This most recent CMS data update ended up filling in most of the Q3 2018 divots and extended the 2018 data to include large portions of the fourth quarter. We have updated all of our dashboards that rely on this dataset, rolling all of them forward to Q4 2018. We couldn't resist sneaking an extended peak at the data, and while we will offer more in-depth analyses soon, we wanted to give some of our initial takeaways.