Boehringer sues US government over Medicare drug price negotiation programme
Boehringer Ingelheim has become the latest drugmaker to sue the US government over the Medicare drug price negotiation element of President Biden’s signature Inflation Reduction Act (IRA).
The IRA allows Medicare, the government health plan for older adults, to negotiate lower prices for a selected group of prescription medicines.
In a complaint filed last Friday, Boehringer argues that the plan violates the US Constitution by giving federal regulators too much power to dictate drug prices.
“The Boehringer global family of companies develops innovative medicines that have changed the lives of millions of patients… The IRA’s drug price negotiation programme upends the framework that has supported these innovations, and does so in a way that violates fundamental constitutional safeguards and undermines proper accountability,” the complaint reads.
The drugmaker also alleges that the programme does not involve “genuine negotiations” between drug manufacturers and the government regarding the price Medicare will pay for prescription drugs.
“Instead, the programme compels manufacturers, on pain of astronomical fines, to provide Medicare participants with ‘access’ to their drugs at below-market rates dictated by Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services,” the complaint says.
Leading drugmakers and industry groups, including Merck & Co, Bristol Myers Squibbs, Johnson & Johnson, the US Chamber of Commerce and the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, have already sued the government over the plan, citing similar concerns.