What We're Reading: Gilead Knew Sovaldi Price Was High

What we're reading, December 2, 2015: Gilead priced Sovaldi knowing the high cost would be a challenge for patients and payers; Senate Republicans will vote Thursday on Obamacare repeal and expect to get the needed votes; and a report calls for a better focus on women's health.

Gilead Priced Sovaldi High Despite Knowing Challenges It Would Cause

An investigation into Gilead Sciences Inc’s pricing of its hepatitis C drug Sovaldi revealed that the company knew the list price would cause payers to restrict patient access and would present challenges for government health programs. The Wall Street Journal also reported that the US Senate committee reviewing internal documents uncovered one executive vice president urged the company not to “fold to advocacy pressure” and to stick with the $1000-a-pill price tag no matter what the response was.

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GOP Confident It Will Pass Obamacare Repeal

If Senate Republicans are to pass their Affordable Care Act repeal and send it to the president’s desk, they can only afford 3 Republicans to jump ship. Currently 2 appear likely to defect over provisions in the bill to defund Planned Parenthood, although Senate Republicans are confident they will secure the needed 51 votes by the vote on Thursday, reported Politico. However, Republicans from states that have expanded Medicaid may be concerned about passing the bill.

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Task Force Report Identifies Needed Research in Women’s Health

The US Preventive Services Task Force has called for a focus on women’s health beyond gynecological and reproductive issues. The report identified 5 high priority areas where there is a gap in evidence-based research. These areas include addressing effective screening in women for issues of domestic violence, drug abuse, depression, and suicide; thyroid dysfunction; and how recommendations can be implemented in primary care practices.

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