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Biden Administration Asserts Authority to Seize High-Priced Drug Patents: A Push to Lower Drug Prices

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Ayanna Amadi
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Biden Administration Asserts Authority to Seize High-Priced Drug Patents: A Push to Lower Drug Prices

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In an unprecedented move, the Biden administration has announced plans to consider overriding the patents of high-priced drugs that have been developed with taxpayer money. This bold initiative is aimed at helping competitors create their own versions of these drugs with the hope of significantly reducing costs and ending price gouging. While this proposal has sparked a considerable amount of debate, it underscores the administration's commitment to making drugs more affordable and accessible to the public.

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Asserting Authority Over Drug Patents

As highlighted in a report by CNBC, the Biden administration is asserting its authority to seize costly medications' patents. A framework has been outlined to guide federal agencies in deciding whether to use a controversial policy known as march-in rights to break the patents of drugs. This policy seeks to update the framework for using march-in rights and forms a key part of President Biden's health care agenda and reelection platform for 2024.

A New Policy to Seize Patents

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According to Reuters, the Biden Administration has announced a new policy to seize patents for medicines developed with government funding if the prices are deemed too high. This policy creates a roadmap for the government's march-in rights, allowing the U.S. government to grant additional licenses to third parties for products developed using federal funds if the original patent holder does not make them available to the public at reasonable prices.

Authority to Seize Certain Drug Patents

As reported by Politico, the administration has determined that it has the authority to seize the patents of certain high-priced medicines. This move could pave the way for a more aggressive federal campaign to slash drug prices. The administration aims to put health care at the center of Biden’s reelection platform, with proposals to expand on laws capping insulin prices for Medicare recipients and allowing Medicare to negotiate the price of certain drugs.

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A Warning to Pharmaceutical Companies

As per AP News, the Biden administration is warning pharmaceutical companies that if the price of certain drugs is too high, the government might cancel their patent protection and allow rivals to make their own versions. The plan announced on Thursday would consider overriding the patent for high-priced drugs that have been developed with the help of taxpayer money in hopes of driving down the cost. It's the latest health policy pitch from a White House gearing up to make its efforts to tackle drug prices a central theme in next year’s reelection campaign.

Seizing Patents on Costly Medications

As stated in Politico Pro, the Biden administration plans to assert its authority to seize certain drug patents on costly medications. The determination represents the culmination of a nearly nine-month review of the government’s so-called march-in rights. The administration’s decision comes as Biden officials seek fresh opportunities to lower drug prices and boost competition within the industry.

In conclusion, the Biden administration's plan to potentially override the patents of high-priced drugs marks a significant shift in U.S. health policy. While it remains to be seen how this policy will be implemented, it's clear that the administration is taking bold moves to make medications more affordable and accessible to the American public.

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