Healthcare News & Insights

Congress to investigate drug price gouging claims

Rep. Elijah E. Cummings of Maryland has started the ball rolling for a Congressional investigation into allegations of companies price-gouging hospitals in the wake of nationwide shortages of key drugs. 

Cummings asked five of the so-called “gray market” companies to provide information on their sales of drugs that are in short supply nationwide. Cummings is interested in reports that some companies are selling the drugs at dramatic markups of hundreds of times their normal prices — in at least once case, a drug that normally sells for around $26/dose was priced at $1,200/dose. Cummings is a ranking member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

So far, one of the five companies is cooperating with the information request.

Aside from being unfair and potentially illegal, the shortages and the questionable supplies that some hospitals are forced to use have raised questions of patient safety.

Cummings’ office has set up a tip line for information on price gouging.

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  1. […] 200 of them — have been declared in an official shortage. Prices have skyrocketed and some hospitals have reported instances of drug scalping and being offered goods that appeared to have been stolen and/or dangerously mishandled by […]