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Factbox: Pharma company executives to testify at U.S. Senate drug price hearing

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Lowering drug prices and healthcare costs for U.S. consumers has been a key focus of President Donald Trump, and rival Democrats are stepping up congressional scrutiny of drug price hikes after gaining control of the U.S. House of Representatives.

The United States has higher prescription drug prices than other developed nations, where governments directly or indirectly control costs.

The following is a list of the company executives who are expected to testify at the hearing, as well as some notable recent price increases by the drugmakers:

AbbVie Inc

Executive testifying: Chief Executive Officer Richard Gonzalez

AbbVie’s rheumatoid arthritis drug Humira is the world’s top-selling prescription medicine, bringing in sales of nearly $20 billion last year.

The drug has a list price of more than $60,000 a year, nearly double the price in 2014, according to Rx Savings Solutions, which helps health plans and employers seek lower cost prescription medicines. AbbVie hiked Humira’s price by 6.2 percent in January.

AstraZeneca Plc

Executive testifying: CEO Pascal Soriot

In January, AstraZeneca raised the list price for its top-selling medicine, asthma drug Symbicort, by 6 percent. It has increased the drug’s list price by about 36 percent since 2014, according to RX Savings Solutions.

Bristol-Myers Squibb Co

Executive testifying: CEO Giovanni Caforio

Bristol-Myers Squibb raised the price of blood thinner Eliquis, which it owns in partnership with Pfizer, by 6 percent in January. The company has increased the list price of the drug, which generated $6.44 billion in 2018 sales for Bristol-Myers, by about 67 percent since 2014.

Johnson & Johnson

Executive testifying: Jennifer Taubert, executive vice president of J&J’s drugs division

In early January, the company raised the U.S. list-prices on around two dozen prescription drugs, including its psoriasis treatment Stelara, prostate cancer drug Zytiga and blood thinner Xarelto.

J&J hiked the list price of Stelara by 6.9 percent in January and it is up about 49 percent since 2014, according to RX Savings Solutions. The drug had sales that exceeded $5 billion last year.

Merck & Co Inc

Executive testifying: CEO Kenneth Frazier

Merck raised the list price of its oral diabetes treatment Januvia by 5 percent in January. It has increased by around 60 percent since 2014, according to RX Savings Solutions. Januvia and related combination product Janumet together brought in close to $6 billion in sales last year.

Pfizer Inc

Executive testifying: CEO Albert Bourla

Pfizer rolled back a set of price increases in July after facing backlash from the Trump administration. Last month, Pfizer raised the prices of 41 of its medicines by 3 percent to 9 percent.

The drugmaker raised the price of its pain drug Lyrica – one of its top-sellers – by 5 percent and has nearly doubled the list price of Lyrica since 2014, according to RX Savings Solutions.

FILE PHOTO: Chairman and CEO of Merck & Co., Kenneth Frazier, takes part in a panel discussion during the Clinton Global Initiative’s annual meeting in New York, September 27, 2015. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
Sanofi SA

Executive testifying: CEO Olivier Brandicourt

The French drugmaker hiked the list price of its long-acting insulin Lantus by 5.2 percent in January, according to Rx Savings Solutions. It has raised the price of the insulin by more than 40 percent since 2014. Lantus recorded sales of 3.6 billion euros ($4 billion) in 2018.

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