The Prescription Justice Board of Directors stands with AARP and Families USA in support of the administration’s Safe Importation Action Plan but strongly urges Congress and the administration to quickly enact more impactful reforms to address the nation’s prescription drug price crisis.
Each year, tens of millions of Americans are forced to forgo filling their prescription because of cost. Forgoing prescribed medication leads to sickness, death, and even larger healthcare costs from hospitalizations when patients stop taking their medications. Every effort to open the door to lower-cost prescription drugs is a step forward to ending this crisis, including safe prescription drug importation. (more…)
Founder of Prescription Justice, Gabriel Levitt, submitted a public comment to the World Health Organization (WHO) on the role of personal importation and online access to safe and affordable medicine in meeting the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The Global Action Plan for Healthy Lives and Well-Being for All is a joint initiative led by twelve global health and development organizations under the auspices of the WHO. The signatory agencies of the Global Action Plan invited submission of comments through a public process to inform the final draft of the Global Action Plan, which will be presented during the United Nations General Assembly in September 2019.
Mr. Levitt's comment below underscores the importance of online access to lower cost medications through safe international online pharmacies as a vital lifeline, especially for the tens of millions of Americans who struggle each year to pay for their medications.
We are pleased to announce that U.S. Senator Angus King (I-ME) has received the Prescription Justice 5-star rating based on his full support of the organization’s Policy Platform to lower drug prices here and expand access to safe and affordable medication from other countries. Senator King’s 5-star rating reflects his unwavering support of commonsense policy solutions to end the prescription drug affordability crisis. Members of Congress get one star for their positions on the following:
1. Recognizes that the United States is suffering from a crisis of high drug prices?
2. Ending the ban that prevents Medicare from negotiating lower drug prices with pharmaceutical companies;
3. Making reverse payment arrangements between brand and generic companies, also known as “pay-for-delay” illegal;
4. Legalizing the importation of lower-cost medication from Canada and other countries with similarly strict pharmaceutical regulations; and
5. Using reasonable, commonsense, and compassionate enforcement discretion to permit individuals to import small quantities of affordable medication to fill prescriptions. (more…)
A group of over 50 healthcare providers, including physicians, nurses and physician assistants, have come together to demand the federal government stop any action that would restrict access to lifesaving medications through personal prescription importation.
In a letter sent to President Donald Trump, members of Congress and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the healthcare providers expressed their alarm over FDA’s action in Florida against offices that primarily serve older Americans who prefer in-person assistance with purchasing medications from Canada and other countries, rather than using an internet site. Last year, FDA agents armed with search warrants notified the office owners that importing drugs is illegal and those who help “administer” such drugs could face fines or jail time. Yet, according to its owners, these offices do not dispense or administer medication to patients. (more…)
Prescription Justice recently joined with nine other health, social justice and consumer advocacy organizations to launch a petition to demand Congress act to bring relief to the millions of Americans who can't afford the prescription drugs they need.
The online petition largely echoes the Prescription Justice policy platform which prioritizes ending the ban on Medicare negotiating drug prices, making pay-for-delay deals illegal, and permitting wider access to lower-cost, imported medication through legislative, regulatory, and policy reforms. (more…)
President Trump reinvigorated the drug price policy debate by recently stating that prescription drug prices "are out of control" and, for a second time, that drug companies are "getting away with murder". He's expected to soon announce a bi-partisan drug price task force to examine prescription drug costs. The president's renewed focus on lowering drug costs is a relief from the misaligned priority of healthcare reform, which seems to have overshadowed Americans most pressing healthcare concern: soaring drug costs.
In his most recent remarks, President Trump focused on the fact that prescription drugs are much cheaper in other countries. In fact, it's common for brand-name prescription drug prices to be as much as 90 percent lower in pharmacies outside the U.S., which is why millions of Americans, despite federal restrictions, have had to import medication from Canada and elsewhere. Unfortunately, the law and misleading public information campaigns sponsored by drug companies scare Americans away from more affordable medication. (more…)
The Prescription Justice coalition letter from last month, signed by a growing number of consumer, health and social justice organizations, supports S. 469/H.R. 1245, The Affordable and Safe Prescription Drug Importation Act of 2017, introduced by Senator Bernie Sanders, I-VT and Representative Elijah Cummings, D-MD. If enacted, this bill would allow individuals, pharmacies and wholesalers to import FDA-approved medications from Canada, and then, after two years, from other countries with equally rigorous systems for regulating the safety and efficacy of pharmaceuticals.
Prescription Justice also supports S. 64 /H.R. 1480, The Safe and Affordable Drugs from Canada Act of 2017, introduced by Senator John McCain, R-AZ and Representative Chellie Pingree, D-ME. This bill wouldallow for the personal importation of safe and affordable drugs from approved pharmacies in Canada. Prescription medications imported under this bill would be the same dosage, form, and potency as drugs in the U.S., but at a significant savings to Americans.
The Brussels Principles underscore the importance of the international online marketplace as a lifeline of affordable medication for the millions of people forced to go without necessary treatment due to drug cost and availability.
On March 31st, 2017, Prescription Justice organized a panel for the RightsCon 2017 conference in Brussels, which addressed protecting online access to safe and affordable medication. The organizers of RightsCon just published their outcomes document in which Prescription Justice’s effort to bring together both medicines access and Internet freedom advocates was recognized.
At that conference, the participants discussed a set of draft principles pertaining to medication sales over the Internet and prescription drug importation. The prevailing position among the panelists was that initiatives funded by the pharmaceutical industry that affect access to medicines on the Internet were detrimental to the cause of prescription drug affordability.