New reports indicate big drug companies are fighting to weaken the parts of the Build Back Better Act that deliver relief to families and give Medicare the power to negotiate for lower prescription drug prices. As Big Pharma continues its fight against Medicare negotiation, here are four big reasons why America’s families reject drug companies’ claims and are demanding action now: 

HIGH PRICES

SHOT: Drug Companies Hiked The Prices Of Nearly 1,000 Drugs In January. Drug companies started 2021 by hiking the prices of hundreds of drugs. In January of 2021, more than 900 brand name drugs experienced price increases, the highest in over a decade. GoodRX found the increases to be the “largest number of increases in years.” 

CHASER: Americans Don’t Trust Pharmaceutical Companies On Pricing. Three in four Americans do not trust drug companies to price their products fairly, with the vast majority of Americans identifying the high cost of prescription drugs to be the result of Big Pharma’s greed. 78 percent report pharmaceutical company’s profits are a major factor contributing to the soaring cost of medications.

POWER & INFLUENCE

SHOT: Pharmaceutical Industry Spent Over $250 Million Trying To Kill Medicare Negotiation. In 2021 alone, Big Pharma has spent nearly $263 million on lobbying — devoting three lobbyists to each member of congress.

CHASER: Americans Dislike Pharma’s Influence In Washington. 72 percent of Americans say the pharmaceutical industry has too much influence over the federal government.

INNOVATION LIES

SHOT: Drug Companies’ Stock Buybacks And Dividends Exceed R&D Spending. Between 2016 and 2020, 14 leading drugmakers spent $577 billion on stock buybacks and dividends—$56 billion more than what was invested in research and development over the same period. One company, Amgen, spent nearly six times more on executive pay, buybacks, and dividends than it did on research and development in 2018.

CHASER: Majority Of Americans Don’t Buy Pharma’s Innovation Argument. Roughly 70 percent of Americans are not convinced by the pharmaceutical industry’s argument that drug price negotiation will harm its ability to fund research and development.

SKY-HIGH PROFITS 

SHOT: Drug Companies Enjoy The Highest Profits Of Major Industry. Pharmaceutical companies experience profit margins nearly three times the average for the S&P 500. Between 2000 and 2018, 35 large drug companies raked in a combined revenue of $11.5 trillion with a gross profit of $8.6 trillion — far more than other large companies. Drug companies could lose $1 trillion in sales and still be the most profitable industry. 

CHASER: Americans Hold Overwhelming Negative Views Of The Pharmaceutical Industry. A 2019 Gallup poll found the pharmaceutical industry to be “the most poorly regarded industry in Americans’ eyes.” The critique of Big Pharma included their seemingly never ending price increases, massive lobbying influence, and role in the opioid crisis, proving distrust of the pharmaceutical industry is far reaching.