Pfizer Hikes Prices on More Than 100 Drugs

Lyrica and Viagra included in price jumps

On January 1, Pfizer raised U.S. prices for more than 100 of its drugs, some by as much as 20%, according to a report from Reuters.

The company confirmed a 9.4% increase for its profitable pain medication pregabalin (Lyrica), which generated $2.3 billion in 2014 U.S. sales; a 12.9% increase for its blockbuster erectile dysfunction drug sildenafil (Viagra), which had 2014 U.S. sales of $1.1 billion; and a 5.0% increase for palbociclib (Ibrance), a breast cancer treatment launched last year at a list price of $9,850 per month or $118,200 per year.

These and other price increases were compiled by a unit of Wolters Kluwer Health and were published in a research note by UBS Securities.

UBS said Pfizer hiked prices by 20% for the anticonvulsant drug phenytoin (Dilantin); the estrogen hormone therapy Menest; the nitroglycerin drug Nitrostat for angina; the atrial fibrillation treatment dofetilide (Tykosyn); and the antibiotic tigecyclin (Tygacil).

The analyst report said U.S. prices were raised on a total of 105 Pfizer drugs. No price reductions were reported.

Pfizer isn’t the only drug-maker to raise prices, according to Reuters. Research firm Truveris found that U.S. prescription drug prices rose 10.9% in 2014, including a 15% increase for brand-name products.

Pfizer plans a $160 billion merger with Ireland-based Allergan Plc to slash its U.S. tax bill, Reuters reported. The deal would create the world’s largest drug-maker and would shift Pfizer’s headquarters to Ireland. It would also be the most significant case of a U.S. company re-incorporating overseas to lower its taxes. President Barack Obama has called such “inversion deals” unpatriotic and has tried to crack down on the practice.

Pfizer posted biopharmaceutical revenue of $45.7 billion in 2014, including U.S. sales of $17.2 billion.

Source: Reuters; January 8, 2016.