The top stories of 2016, related to prescription drugs, were pretty memorable. We saw everything from big pharma executives being questioned by Congress, to major drugs coming off patent. Let’s explore the top stories of 2016, from the prescription drug industry.

Top Stories of 2016

 

5. California’s Prop 61 Fails to Pass

California’s Prop 61, also known as the Drug Price Standards Initiative, was designed to restrict the amount any state government agency would pay for prescription drugs. If Prop 61 would have passed, California state agencies would have been able to negotiate drug prices using the Department of Veterans Affairs’ model. In November, Prop 61 failed to pass.
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4. Crestor’s Patent Expires

Crestor’s patent expired on July 8, 2016. After Crestor’s patent expired, manufacturers of the drug’s generic, named Rosuvastatin Calcium, are now able to produce and market it. By just switching to Rosuvastatin Calcium, consumers will be able to save over $200 a fill.
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3. Prescription Drug Pricing Apps Put to the Test

Some people find it hard to believe that you can save money on your prescription drugs by simply downloading a free app. Well, it’s true. An investigative reporter put LowestMed’s app to the test and found that the discounts offered by LowestMed could beat his insurance price.
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2. Your Copay May Be Costing You More Money Than You Think

An investigative reporter from Louisiana brought some surprising information to light after he spoke to a pharmacist about copays. He found that some insurance copays were more expensive than discounts found through free programs like LowestMed.
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1. EpiPen Prices Spiral Out of Control

The biggest story from 2016, related to prescription drug prices, was the skyrocketing costs for EpiPens. This story may have also made it into the overall top stories of 2016. After it was found that the price of EpiPen increased from $100 in 2007 to $608 in 2016, there was a massive public outcry over the drug’s cost.

This resulted in widespread media criticism. That led to the CEO of Mylan Pharmaceuticals (EpiPen’s maker) being summoned for questioning by Congress, as well as Mylan Pharmaceuticals offering an EpiPen generic called Epinephrine Injection, USP. Though consumers can save around $300 by switching to the generic, consumer feel it is still too expensive and can find other alternatives like Adrenaclick or Epinephrine.
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