The Big Pharma Screw Continues

Drug Prices Are Too Damn High!


January is the bellwether month for brand drug price increases, but context is necessary to see how 2022 stacks up to years past.

On brand.

The first month of 2022 is officially in the rearview mirror. And if you’re a padawan of prescription drug pricing, you know that January is the bellwether month for brand drug list price increases. And this year is no different.

With that in mind, we figured it was the perfect time to break away from endless speculation over this week’s Book of Boba Fett finale, sit inside where it’s warm, and assess what changes in brand drug prices we see now that January is in the books. And according to our Brand Drug List Price Change Box Score, when netting out all of the January 2022 brand increases and decreases, we see a total of 852 increases.

For some, that stat alone may be all they need to be adequately equipped to tell the story of prescription drug pricing – from a certain point of view.

Alas, far too often, the hot takes on drug prices only scratch the surface and are devoid of context and nuance.

In our latest drug pricing report, we aim to dig below the surface in an effort to shorten the divide between public understanding of drug pricing and actual drug pricing truths.

While we don’t have all of the nuance that we’d like – thanks to the tremendous secrecy and lack of transparency surrounding granular net pricing and utilization data – we do have a lot of seasoning to add to the discourse.

So which drugs took increases? What drugs saw the largest price hikes? Which drugmakers pressed their feet to the gas pedal the most? Which popular drugs actually saw decreases in price? And how does 2022 compare to previous years?

All that and more in our immersion into the January 2022 drug pricing bacta tank.


Shout-out to Jake Zuckerman at the Ohio Capital Journal for doing one of the better jobs we’ve seen of illustrating the collateral damage of our nation’s drug pricing conundrum through the lens of a patient struggling to afford their insulin and the other medications and products needed to help them manage diabetes. As highlighted in the above report, for some, the list prices for medications are very real.