As legislative debate continues to contemplate the future of healthcare, prescription drug prices soared 8.77% in 2016, representing the fourth consecutive year of inflation above 8%. This represents an average annual price increase of 9.98% over the last three years.
The data was released as part of the Truveris NDI (National Drug Index), a weighted price index that measures the average price of prescription drugs in the U.S., driven by the most commonly prescribed medications.
In comparison, the Consumer Price Index (CPI), maintained by the U.S. Department of Labor and used as a measure of the average change in prices of purchased goods by households, reported a 2.10% increase for 2016. This would mean drug prices inflated 318% more than the price of all goods in the U.S. For Q1 2017, the Truveris NDI indicates that drug prices continue to outpace general inflation, increasing 2.33%.
"This continued trend reflects a growing concern about the affordability of prescriptions," said AJ Loiacono, co-founder and chief innovation officer of Truveris, a leading technology company focused on reducing costs across the prescription drug industry. "The actual inflation of drug prices is softened by insurance carriers and benefit managers who report overall trends. The underlying price inflation is masked by rebates, reduced compound dispensing, and lower utilization of hepatitis C drugs. Actual drug price inflation hurts the patient the most, especially individuals with high deductibles, coinsurance or no insurance at all."
From January to December of 2016, the newly released index shows:
"At Truveris, our goal is to reduce costs across the pharmacy value chain and remove process complexity," said Loiacono. "Technology-powered decision making for payers coupled with greater transparency for consumers will bend the drug price cost curve."
Truveris works with the nation's largest employers, unions, and government entities to implement the most effective pharmacy benefit plans. Through an independent reverse auction and claims adjudication platform, Truveris manages the full pharmacy benefits lifecycle from RFP to ongoing bill review. In addition, we partner with retail pharmacies and manufacturers to deliver programs that reduce abandonment and increase adherence for underinsured and uninsured patients.
Since 2009, Truveris has processed 10 billion Rx claim transactions to drive $3 billion in total savings across more than 6.5 million covered members.