Pfizer Reverses Drug Price Hikes After Call with Trump and HHS Secretary

Pfizer Drop the Price
Seth Wenig/AP
Washington, DC

Major U.S. drug manufacturer Pfizer agreed to roll back July 1 drug price hikes after an “extensive discussion” with President Donald Trump on Tuesday.

“Just talked with Pfizer CEO and @SecAzar on our drug pricing blueprint,” Trump tweeted Tuesday night after arriving in Brussels, Belgium, for the NATO summit. “Pfizer is rolling back price hikes, so American patients don’t pay more.”

“We applaud Pfizer for this decision and hope other companies do the same,” wrote Trump. “Great news for the American people!”

The company’s price hikes on 100 products went into effect on July 1. It was the company’s second price hike this year. While prices on many drugs were increased, there were also decreases on a few of their products.

Trump reacted sharply to news of Pfizer’s price hikes, proclaiming, “Pfizer & others should be ashamed that they have raised drug prices for no reason.” He accused the company of taking advantage of the poor and defenseless while giving bargains to countries in Europe and elsewhere. He warned, “We will respond!” It wasn’t clear at the time what that response would be.

Then came Tuesday’s news that Pfizer would reverse its hikes and a statement detailing the price rollback. The price decreases will remain in effect, according to Pfizer’s Tuesday release.

Pfizer Chairman and CEO Ian Read took the call with Trump Tuesday and subsequently announced the deferral of the July 1 price increases. The company agreed to make the deferral while the Trump administration works on President Trump’s blueprint to lower drug prices and improve healthcare for patients.

The price rollback will take place “as soon as technically possible,” according to Pfizer. Prices will remain in effect until the Trump blueprint takes effect or the end of 2018, whichever comes first.

“Pfizer shares the President’s concern for patients and commitment to providing affordable access to the medicines they need,” said Reid. He added that the company has “recently committed $5 billion of capital to expand our manufacturing in the U.S.”

“We are encouraged that the President recognizes the value our industry brings to society and our ability to fulfill our mission to discover and bring innovative new medicines to patients,” said Reid.

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