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Trump says executive order will ensure US will pay lowest prices in the world for drugs

Published on 08/07/19 at 09:59am

President Donald Trump has said that the White House is working on a ‘favoured nation clause’ to ensure the United States pays the same price for pharmaceutical drugs as those countries that pay the lowest prices in the world.  

Speaking on 5 July, Trump said: “We’re gonna be announcing something very shortly – a favoured nation’s clause. As you know, for years and years, other nations paid less for drugs, sometimes by 60-70%. We’re going to be, and we’re working on it right now, we’re working on a favoured nation’s clause where we pay whatever the lowest nation’s price is.”

“Why should other nations – like Canada –pay much less than us? They’ve taken advantage of the system for a long time, pharma. So what we’re working on right now is a favoured nations clause, so that whatever the lowest nation is, anywhere in the world, or company, but the lowest nation or company, then what happens is we will pay that amount and that’s being worked on right now. We’re going to do it in the form of an executive order.”

The comments comes as Trump’s administration said they intend to set the prices that Medicare pays according to an index of drug prices from around the world.

In October 2018, Trump used the term ‘favoured nation clauses’ to describe a plan that would “allow Medicare to determine the price it pays for certain drugs based on the cheaper prices paid by other nations.” However the recent statements are the first mention of a broad executive order.

In explaining the move, Trump said: “I just don’t like being taken advantage of by other countries, by pharmaceutical companies, by all of the people who are taking advantage of this country.”

Louis Goss

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