NBC NEWS: Defying Trump, drugmakers hike prescription drug prices for 2019

The United States has higher drug prices than in other countries where governments control the costs, making it the world’s most lucrative market. Nearly 30 drugmakers have taken steps to raise the prices of their medicines in January, ending a self-declared halt to increases made by a pharma industry under pressure from President Donald Trump.

The hikes, as seen in documents viewed by Reuters, will pose a new challenge to Trump’s pledge to lower the costs of prescription medications in the world’s most expensive pharmaceutical market.

The Department of Health and Human Services has proposed a slew of policies aimed at lowering prices and passing more of the discounts negotiated by health insurers on to patients. Those measures are not expected to provide relief to consumers in the short-term, however, and fall short of giving government health agencies direct authority to negotiate or regulate drug prices.

Twenty-eight drugmakers filed notifications with California agencies in early November, disclosing that they planned to raise prices in 60 days or longer. Under a state law passed last year, companies are required to notify payers in California if they intend to raise the list price on any drug by more than 16 percent over a two-year period.

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