Biogen Faces Democrats’ Ire Over Price Tag for Alzheimer’s Drug

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The cost of Biogen Inc.’s new Alzheimer’s drug is drawing criticism from Democratic lawmakers just a day after its approval by U.S. regulators.

The $56,000-a-year price tag for Biogen’s Aduhelm “will likely cost Medicare billions of dollars,” said Carolyn Maloney, chair of the House Oversight Committee, in an emailed statement. Ron Wyden, chair of the Senate Finance Committee, tweeted on Tuesday that it’s “unconscionable” to charge so much for a drug that hasn’t been proven to work.

Aduhelm was granted accelerated approval based on data suggesting a clinical benefit, and Biogen will need to conduct further research to confirm that. That could take years, adding to concerns about what effect the medicine will have on health-care spending in the meantime.

Representative Ro Khanna, a California Democrat, said Aduhelm’s price tag “is further evidence that our drug-pricing system is broken.” He, Maloney and Wyden all support granting Medicare the ability to negotiate prescription drug prices.

Read more: Democrats’ Drug Bill in Jeopardy as Centrists Plot Alternatives

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