WASHINGTON, DC –– In response to Pfizer’s price hikes on 41 drugs taking effect today, David Mitchell, a cancer patient and the founder of Patients For Affordable Drugs, issued the following statement:
“To Pfizer, patients aren’t people –– we’re a payday. Instead of raising prices, Pfizer should lower prices on existing drugs by 1 percent in each of the next three years. And to increase its revenue, Pfizer should introduce innovative drugs instead of hiking the prices of old ones.”
- Patients Suffer under Pfizer’s Hikes: April Knowles has incurable breast cancer and takes the Pfizer therapy Ibrance to extend her life and time with her husband and 12-year-old son. The price? About $13,000 every 28 days. When it was first approved in February 2015, Ibrance had a price tag of $9,850 a month. That’s an increase of nearly one-third in just four years.
- Pfizer has a History of Price Hikes: Historically, Pfizer has increased prices of its medications multiple times per year, far exceeding the rate of inflation.
- In 2017, Pfizer raised the price of 91 drugs by 20 percent — that was nearly 10 times the rate of inflation.
- In 2016, Pfizer was one of seven drugmakers that relied on price hikes for 100 percent of its earnings growth, meaning it was totally reliant on price hikes to grow its business — instead of innovating to create new drugs.
- In 2013, Pfizer brought Xeljanz to market for $24,666 per year, an amount that at the time The New York Times called “eye-popping.” Today, Xeljanz can be used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, ulcerative colitis, and psoriatic arthritis, growing the market for Pfizer. The company raised the price of Xeljanz anyway increasing it by 44.3 percent over just three years. In early 2018, Pfizer increased the price again by 8 percent, bringing it to a whopping$50,000 a year — doubling the original price in just five years.
- From 2012 to 2017, Pfizer raised the price of Spiriva by 31 percent, landing on a list price of $368 for a one-month supply.
- According to Senate documents, Pfizer increased the price of Lyrica by 145 percent from 2009 to 2015, with an increase of 19.3 percent in 2017 alone.