Thursday, October 23, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Daniel Hoffman

Where health care is headed

Tuesday, September 30, 2014, 2:23 PM
The trend lines in U.S. health care keep getting clearer. Employers are shifting larger percentages of the coverage costs to their employees (see here). At the same time, private insurers try to evade the Affordable Care Act's prohibition against excluding people with serious or pre-existing conditions... Read more

Two myths of patient recruitment

Tuesday, September 23, 2014, 1:09 PM
An invitation recently arrived by email to attend a podcast purporting to show how promoting clinical studies in social media can seriously boost patient recruitment. The podcasts's underlying premise constitutes yet another contribution to the radically exaggerated, even misleading notion that IT... Read more

Is Novartis' LCZ696 "revolutionary" or just a marginal improvement?

Wednesday, September 10, 2014, 1:02 PM
Over the Labor Day weekend, Novartis presented the results of a trial for its cardiovascular compound, LSC696, at the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) meeting in Barcelona, Spain. Reactions to those results were the number one topic on the pharma blogosphere for several days afterward. Prior... Read more

Where will pharma land when US healthcare comes apart?

Tuesday, September 2, 2014, 11:18 AM
The Affordable Care Act has now successfully withstood the slanders and subversions of the reactionary-right to become a permanent part of the American health care system. At the same time, recognition seems to be growing that it will do little if anything to correct the system's fundamental problem... Read more

Pharma's drug development ignores narrowing formularies

Monday, August 18, 2014, 5:30 AM
For more than 50 years the me-too element of pharma was an integral part of its business model. The process involves a company developing and launching a compound that produces almost exactly the same clinical results as other products already available in that therapeutic class. In itself this me-too... Read more

Controlling drug cost, part deux

Wednesday, July 30, 2014, 10:13 AM
In this space a couple of weeks ago, we made the point that restrictive formularies represent a useful approach to controlling drug prices. It was especially instructive to then see an article written by two researchers from CVS/Caremark in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) that... Read more

Restrictive formularies: The path to more affordable drug prices

Thursday, July 17, 2014, 11:49 AM
At the end of June the New York Times examined how pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs), hope to force price competition among pharmaceutical companies. PBMs act as agents for payers — private insurers and employers — to negotiate drug purchasing contracts and manage formularies. The plan... Read more

Need patients for trials? Don't hire a promoter to find them

Wednesday, July 2, 2014, 2:15 PM
Since patient recruitment is the rate-limiting factor in completing clinical trials, it's not surprising that many pharmaceutical companies hire ‘niche’ vendors to help locate willing subjects. These include marketing firms, database suppliers, ad agencies and other vendors claiming to... Read more

Drug pricing here makes Americans into patsies

Thursday, June 26, 2014, 5:30 AM
An analyst at Seeking Alpha recently wrote that U.S. drug pricing should encourage the rest of the world to call us, "The United States of Saps." He supported this disparaging view by citing an article in The Economist to show how drug pricing in the U.S. exploits the public here compared to residents... Read more

A Head-Spinning Reversal of Views on Valeant-Allergan

Tuesday, June 17, 2014, 12:01 PM
In late April, Valeant Pharmaceuticals, a company domiciled in Canada, but managed in the U.S., extended an offer of approximately $45 billion for Allergan, the company that makes Botox and a range of other products, especially in vision care. Within a month's time, Valeant raised its offer twice,... Read more
About this blog

Check Up covers major health events in our region and offers everything from personal health advice to an expert look at health reform. Read about some of our bloggers here.

For Inquirer.com. Portions of this blog may also be found in the Inquirer's Sunday Health Section

Michael R. Cohen, R.Ph. President, Institute for Safe Medication Practices
Daniel R. Hoffman, Ph.D. President, Pharmaceutical Business Research Associates
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