BIG PHARMA POLITICS: Consumers pressure politicians to do something about rising drug prices. Read More
While consumers continue to pay more for their medications, the pharmaceutical industry continues to make big profits.
Axios reports that seven of the world’s largest drug makers collectively earned $12.1 billion – that’s with a b – in profit in just the first three months of the year. The companies – AbbVie, Amgen, Novartis, GlaxoSmithKline, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Eli Lily and Biogen – saw profits 29 percent higher than the same time a year ago.
Pfizer just released its first-quarter earnings, and – surprise – they’re up, too: 2.7 percent, beating the company’s estimates, according to a Reuters story on CNBC. Still other drug companies have yet to release their earnings, so the total could grow.
Drugs like Pfizer’s Ibrance, used to treat breast cancer, and AbbVie’s Humira, used to treat rheumatoid arthritis among other things, were key profit-makers for those companies.
Even though Congress and the administration have called out high drug prices as an issue in their sights, the companies have continued to raise prices on some medications.
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