Senator Bernie Sanders Applauds GSK's Move To Cap Inhaler Costs At $35 Per Month

Zinger Key Points
  • GSK, largest manufacturer of inhaler products in US, will cap out-of-pocket costs at $35 per month for its asthma, COPD inhalers by 2025.
  • AstraZeneca, GSK, and Teva made over $25 billion in revenue from inhalers in the past five years.

On Wednesday, GSK Plc GSK announced it will cap out-of-pocket costs for eligible patients at no more than $35 per month for all its asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) medicines.

The program will be implemented by January 1, 2025.

The medicines in scope are Advair Diskus, Advair HFA, Anoro Ellipta, Arnuity Ellipta, Breo Ellipta, Incruse Ellipta, Serevent Diskus, Trelegy Ellipta, Ventolin HFA.

GSK recently reduced the wholesale acquisition cost for Advair Diskus by an average of 50% and Advair HFA by an average of 20%.

Earlier this week, AstraZeneca Plc AZN announced that starting June 1, 2024, eligible patients will pay no more than $35 per month for all AstraZeneca U.S. inhaled respiratory medicines, including Airsupra, Bevespi Aerosphere, Breztri Aerosphere, Symbicort

Sen. Bernie Sanders said, “With today’s announcement, the three largest manufacturers of inhalers in the world have all committed to cap the cost of inhalers in the United States at no more than $35 at the pharmacy counter. This will significantly cut costs for millions of Americans with asthma and COPD so that they will be able to afford the inhalers they need.”

In January, the HELP Committee criticized the four inhaler manufacturers — AstraZeneca, Boehringer, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Limited TEVA, and GSK over high prices and launched an investigation related to prices at which these were sold in the U.S. versus other countries.

The committee highlighted that GSK charges $319 for Advair HFA in the U.S. but just $26 for the same inhaler in the U.K. 

Teva charges $286 for its QVAR RediHaler for U.S. patients and just $9 in Germany. 

Boehringer Ingelheim charges $489 for Combivent Respimat in the U.S., but just $7 in France. 

One of AstraZeneca’s inhalers, Breztri Aerosphere, costs $645 in the U.S. but just $49 in the U.K.

The committee noted that prices charged in the U.S. drive massive revenues for these four companies. AstraZeneca, GSK, and Teva made over $25 billion in revenue from inhalers in the past five years.

Price Action: GSK shares are up 0.12% at $41.98 during the premarket session on the last check Thursday.

Photo by Sheila Fitzgerald on Shutterstock

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