Gilead faces lawsuit over HIV drug pricing

pharmaphorum | May 16, 2018

Gilead faces lawsuit over HIV drug pricing
Gilead and other pharma companies stand accused of engaging in a scheme to block cheaper competitors to life-saving HIV drugs from entering the market. A complaint filed in the US District Court in San Francisco also names Bristol-Myers Squibb and Johnson & Johnson as co-defendants. The class action lawsuit was filed by HIV activists in the court and is another example of the frustration with pharma pricing in the US, where many patients cover all or part of their medicines bill, depending on their insurance arrangements. This lawsuit focuses on the cocktails of antiretroviral drugs used to suppress HIV in infected individuals. Most of the drugs rely on cocktails of three drugs taken in combination, to ensure that the virus remains inactive should it develop a resistance to one of the agents. But the activists argue that Gilead and others did not substitute generic versions of individual components in the combinations, allowing them to maintain high branded prices for the medications. They argued that had versions using generic compounds been available, the cost of some of the drug combinations could have been halved.


Teva Pharmaceutical is being accused in an alleged scheme with 19 other drug companies to inflate drug prices by as much as 1,000 percent.

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