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AbbVie opts out of industry trade groups PhRMA, BIO plus Business Roundtable – Endpoints News


Ab­b­Vie is drop­ping its mem­ber­ship at lead­ing in­dus­try trade groups Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal Re­search and Man­u­fac­tur­ers of Amer­i­ca (PhRMA), Biotech­nol­o­gy In­no­va­tion Or­ga­ni­za­tion (BIO) and the broad­er Busi­ness Round­table as­so­ci­a­tion of chief ex­ec­u­tives.

Ab­b­Vie did not give a rea­son for drop­ping the mem­ber­ships, say­ing on­ly in a state­ment: “We reg­u­lar­ly eval­u­ate our mem­ber­ships with in­dus­try trade as­so­ci­a­tions and our most re­cent as­sess­ment led us to de­cide not to re­new our mem­ber­ship with se­lect trade as­so­ci­a­tions.”

The news was re­port­ed first by Politi­co.

End­points News asked 10 oth­er Big Phar­ma com­pa­nies if they are leav­ing, or con­sid­er­ing leav­ing, PhRMA or any oth­er in­dus­try or­ga­ni­za­tions. While not all re­spond­ed be­fore press time, Eli Lil­ly and No­var­tis were among those that said they do not in­tend to leave any in­dus­try groups.

Ab­b­Vie’s de­ci­sion to quit the lead­ing lob­by­ing group comes af­ter a ma­jor de­feat in Con­gress this sum­mer with the pas­sage of the In­fla­tion Re­duc­tion Act, cre­at­ing the abil­i­ty for Medicare to ne­go­ti­ate drug prices, with its nu­mer­ous up­com­ing drug in­dus­try af­fects. The bill will al­so cap out of pock­et ex­pens­es for se­niors and lim­it their in­sulin month­ly costs to $35.

PhRMA con­firmed Ab­b­Vie’s de­par­ture to End­points in an email and said, in part, that the Big Phar­ma’s de­par­ture “does not change our fo­cus on fight­ing for so­lu­tions pa­tients and our health­care sys­tem need.”

PhRMA and its lob­by­ists aren’t used to de­feat — they had suc­cess­ful­ly turned back ef­forts to al­low Medicare to ne­go­ti­ate pre­scrip­tion drug prices for more than a decade — so the his­toric loss may have many re-eval­u­at­ing just what hap­pened.

Ab­b­Vie’s CEO Richard Gon­za­lez faced a grilling from a Sen­ate com­mit­tee in 2019 over Hu­mi­ra pric­ing tac­tics, and he tes­ti­fied again, be­fore the House Over­sight com­mit­tee in May 2021, with reps on both sides of the aisle ex­press­ing out­rage af­ter in­ter­nal doc­u­ments showed how Ab­b­Vie orig­i­nal­ly pro­ject­ed biosim­i­lar com­pe­ti­tion for its megablock­buster Hu­mi­ra in 2017, but then “em­ployed legal­ly ques­tion­able tac­tics” to de­lay ac­cess to biosim­i­lars un­til next year.

Gon­za­lez was among the more than 30 phar­ma chief ex­ec­u­tives who signed a let­ter in ear­ly Au­gust, sent short­ly be­fore the pas­sage of the In­fla­tion Re­duc­tion Act, cit­ing con­cerns about the bill’s “at­tack on med­ical in­no­va­tion and the mis­lead­ing way it is be­ing sold to the Amer­i­can pub­lic.”

Ed­i­tor’s note: The sto­ry was up­dat­ed to re­flect that As­traZeneca did not in­di­cate it was, or was not, re­view­ing its mem­ber­ships, but on­ly that it had no up­date about its plans.



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