CAPA Statement on Inclusion of Big Pharma Handout in Massive Spending Package

Urges Congress to Put Patients First and Finally Act on Long Overdue Patent Reforms

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Coalition Against Patent Abuse, a diverse coalition of healthcare providers, consumer groups, patient advocacy organizations, free-market advocates and others released the following statement today regarding a last-minute provision slipped into the $1.4 trillion spending bill without any hearings or public debate regarding its ramifications for patients struggling with high drug prices.  As STAT News reported, three lines and 17 new words in the 1173-page bill passed by the House Tuesday, that was seemingly added to the bill without any public fingerprints, is a “boost” for Big Pharma, translating “into bigger profits for drug makers and longer waits for consumers eager for cheaper generic drugs.”

Given the evidence that expanding the definition of biologic drugs is unnecessary, this provision is a step in the wrong direction.

The following statement is attributable to Matthew Lane, Executive Director of the Coalition Against Patent Abuse:

  • “By expanding the definition of biologic drugs, Congress has seemingly enabled brand-name pharmaceutical companies to extend product monopolies at the expense of American patients, without any hearings or public debate.  This means it has the potential to significantly delay competition for newly-developed medicines, particularly those used to treat diabetes.”  

“This last-minute legislative change is particularly disappointing given the growing bipartisan support for substantive reforms aimed at lowering prescription drug prices and stopping brand-name pharmaceutical companies’ patent abuse.  While we are disappointed in Congress’ actions, our coalition stands ready to work with members of both parties to move forward with solutions that will begin to help make prescription drugs more affordable for American patients and end abuse of the patent system.”