Valeant offers discounts on heart drugs

May 17, 2016

After heavy criticism by Congress, presidential candidates and others, Valeant Pharmaceuticals is offering a discount program on its heart drugs Nitropress and Isuprel.

After heavy criticism by Congress, presidential candidates and others, Valeant Pharmaceuticals is offering a discount program on its heart drugs Nitropress and Isuprel.

Soon after Valeant acquired Isuprel and Nitropress in February, 2015, the company quickly raised the drug’s prices by 525% and 212%, respectively.

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The company announced May 16 that it will make an enhanced rebate program for the 2 drugs available to all hospitals in the United States. Under the program, hospitals are eligible for a rebate of at least 10%, with rebates totaling 20%, 30% or 40%, based on volume purchased during a calendar quarter for hospitals that purchase large volumes of the relevant drug.

"Under this new program, the discounts we previously implemented for Nitropress and Isuprel will be simplified and more accessible," said Joseph Papa, chairman and CEO of Valeant. "I understand the concerns our partners in the health care community have had about the pricing of these drugs, and we want to ensure hospitals and patients can get the drugs they need.”

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Papa also thanked the Senate Committee on Aging and the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform “for the attention they have brought to this issue, and specifically to gaps they identified in the previous program”. "We are committed to getting this right."

Hospitals will receive these discounts primarily through their group purchasing organization (GPO). Hospitals that don't buy drugs through a GPO can access the program by contacting Valeant customer service.

The rebate program is effective immediately, with hospitals receiving rebates after the end of the quarter in which the purchases were made. Notably, Valeant’s Patient Access and Pricing Committee also confirmed that there would be no further price increases for these products or reductions to the discount levels in the rebate program.

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