Kaiser Health News
Hospitals are getting slammed by drug price hikes that often have nothing to do with improving patient health, a new report has found.
Inpatient drug spending increased by 23.4 percent annually from 2013 to 2015, compared with 9.9 percent annual increases on retail drug spending during the same period, according to a new report by National Opinion Research Center (NORC) at the University of Chicago, which was commissioned by the American Hospital Association and the Federation of American Hospitals.
Spending was driven by increases in drug unit prices rather than an increase in the volume of drugs used, they found.
“It would be one thing if price increases were associated with clear and important clinical improvements, but they’re not,” Chip Kahn, CEO of the federation, said Tuesday in a press briefing.
The price hikes driving the spending increases “appear to be random and inconsistent from one year to the next,” the researchers wrote. About half of the drug price hikes in the report occurred in drugs with no generic competitors. [Read more…]