With the cost of prescription drugs increasing faster than other health care costs, the FTC is committed to preventing mergers or conduct that may allow firms to raise drug prices. In the last year, the Commission challenged seven mergers involving pharmacies or pharmaceutical manufacturers, preserving competition for blood-plasma derived drugs, acne and cancer creams, and pain medicines, among others.
One of the Commission's top priorities continues to be restricting anticompetitive "pay-for-delay" patent settlements. Because these agreements delay the availability of low-cost generic drugs, branded manufacturers profit by continuing to charge monopoly prices and generic manufacturers receive substantial compensation for agreeing not to compete. Meanwhile, consumers, businesses, and government programs such as Medicare bear the heavy costs of higher drug prices. The FTC monitors these agreements, which have increased significantly in response to permissive court rulings; has challenged several in court; and is pressing for a legislative fix to put an end to these deals.
The Commission also brought charges that CVS Caremark misrepresented the prices of certain Medicare Part D prescription drugs on important websites. As a result, some seniors and disabled consumers allegedly paid significantly more for their drugs than they had expected. CVS Caremark agreed to pay $5 million to reimburse affected Medicare Part D consumers for the price discrepancy to settle the charges.
- Hikma: FTC Requires Hikma to Sell Two Drugs as Condition of Baxter Healthcare Acquisition
- Grifols and Talecris: FTC Challenges Grifols/Talecris Merger as Anticompetitive
- Cardinal Health: FTC Settles Charges That Cardinal Health's Purchase of Biotech Was Anticompetitive
- Perrigo and Paddock: FTC Puts Conditions on Perrigo's Proposed Acquisition of Paddock Labs
- Teva and Cephalon: FTC Requires Sale of Generic Cancer Pain Drug and Muscle Relaxant as Conditions of Teva's $6.8 Billion Acquisition of Cephalon
- Valeant: FTC Protects Consumers by Requiring Valeant to Sell Three Prescription Drugs as Condition to Acquire Rival Dermatology Businesses from Sanofi and Johnson & Johnson
- CVS Caremark: CVS Caremark Corporation Settles FTC Deceptive Pricing Charges
- Omnicare: Omnicare Abandons Plan to Buy Rival Pharmacy in Light of FTC Lawsuit
- Report: Agreements Filed with the Federal Trade Commission under the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003
- Report: Authorized Generic Drugs: Short-Term Effects and Long-Term Impact
- Staff Comment: Proposed New York Legislation Would Reduce Competition and Likely Lead to Higher Prescription Drug Costs
- FTC Staff Finds Sanofi-Aventis, Watson Pharmaceuticals, and Synthon Holding B.V. Failed to Report Drug Patent Agreements as Required by Law
- FTC Files Amicus Brief in U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit in K-Dur Antitrust Litigation Urging Reversal of Pay-for-Delay Ruling