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Advocacy group pushes transparency in drug pricing

September 10th, 2016 by WCBC Radio

A coalition of Maryland health care advocates want to require drug companies to explain why medications cost so much and to empower the state's attorney general to investigate pharmaceutical companies for allegations of price gouging.

The Maryland Citizens' Health Initiative announced Thursday they will seek legislation next year that would force drug companies to reveal how they set prices for generic and specialty medications. This year, 10 other states have considered similar legislation. Only Vermont adopted it.

The group also released a poll by Annapolis-based OpinionWorks that said three-quarters of the Maryland voters they surveyed are concerned about rising drug costs. The poll also found more than 80 percent supported making drug companies explain their pricing, as well as notify the public before price increases. Most respondents said they would be willing to cross party lines in order to support a candidate who backed transparency in drug pricing.

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