Trump pledges new HHS Secretary Azar will get drug prices ‘way down.’ Why aren’t pharma investors scared?

July 28, 2018 Apparently not.  In January 2018, at the swearing-in ceremony for new HHS Secretary Alex Azar, Trump said Azar would bring drug prices “way down.”  However, this time, despite the familiar words, the President’s comments did not touch off nearly the same reaction on Wall Street, signaling that industry and investors may be … Read more

Hospitals want to use Amazon’s voice recognition software, but real-world hurdles remain

July 24, 2018 Health systems like Boston Children’s Hospital and Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles have been exploring ways to integrate Amazon’s Alexa into the clinical environment, according to CNBC, in some cases using it to improve compliance with surgical safety checklists.   Silicon Valley venture capitalists are also keen on health apps that could … Read more

Big Pharma greets hundreds of ex-federal workers at the ‘revolving door’

July 13, 2018 A Kaiser Health News (KHN) analysis shows that hundreds of people have glided through the “revolving door” that connects the drug industry to Capitol Hill and to the Department of Health and Human Services.  Azar was confirmed in January as HHS Secretary, joining other former drug industry alumni in top positions. Nearly … Read more

FDA, FTC warn companies for selling illegal, unapproved opioid cessation products using deceptive claims

July 10, 2018 The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in January posted joint Warning Letters to the marketers and distributors of 12 opioid cessation products, for illegally marketing unapproved products with claims about their ability to help in the treatment of opioid addiction and withdrawal.  “The FDA is … Read more

Stopgap funding bill delays enforcement of medical device tax

July 06, 2018 Republicans’ failure to overturn Obamacare or include measures to repeal the 2.3% medical device levy in broader tax legislation meant the previously delayed charge came into force at the start of the year, despite intense industry lobbying and opposition to the tariff among both political parties. Now, with the day on which … Read more

Message to Trump: Alnylam CEO proud to be a ‘shitholer’

July 03, 2018 John Maraganore, CEO of Alnylam, who has a biotech CV as long as your arm, had this to say about reports that Trump asked at a White House meeting why he should accept immigrants from “shithole countries” rather than from places like Norway:  “My Mom and Dad came to this country from … Read more