WashU Expert: Trump’s new NAFTA won’t lower domestic drug prices
But it theoretically boosts U.S. drugmakers’ profits
President Donald Trump has touted his new United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) as a way to boost the American economy. It may not, however, have any impact on one of his other campaign promises: reducing prescription costs for U.S. consumers, says a drug pricing expert at Washington University in St. Louis.
Buried in the draft of the new pact is a provision that would give pharmaceutical companies a minimum of 10 years to exclusively market biologic drugs, a set of complex medications made from living cells.
The Trump administration claims the USMCA would protect their profits.
“In the U.S., we give innovator pharmaceutical companies some period of exclusivity after their product comes to market, before which a biosimilar drug can be approved on the strength of the innovator drugs application in the first instance,” said Rachel Sachs, associate professor of law in the School of Law and an expert on drug policy and pricing.