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The Valeant and Turing cases demonstrate the failures of current policies. Companies are manipulating patent laws to make a profit without investing in new research and development. There are also few regulations in place to limit extreme price increases, which allowed Turing to increase the price of Daraprim by 500 percent (NY Times). Policymakers need to determine a way to protect people’s ability to buy medications while promoting innovation.The Clinton Plan for Lowering Prescription Drug CostsHillary Clinton, the 2016 Democratic presidential nominee, is an outspoken advocate for reducing prescription drug costs by increasing regulations on the pharmaceutical industry ().During the campaign, Clinton wanted to “to promote competition and leverage our nation’s bargaining power to lower drug costs on behalf of Americans.” Her plan was to “[encourage] competition to get more generics on the market and create a Federal backstop for when there are excessively high-priced drugs that face no competition.” She also demanded a “stop to excessive profiteering and marketing by denying tax breaks for direct-to-consumer advertising and demanding that drug companies invest in R&D in exchange for taxpayer support” (HillaryClinton.com).Clinton’s plan addressed the lack of investment in research, misdirection of government research subsidies towards advertising, and absence of competition in the market. By ensuring subsidies are used only for research and “[funding] the FDA’s Office of Generic Drugs to clear out their multi-year generic drug approval backlog,” drug prices will decrease and competition in the industry will increase. Additionally, allowing Americans to import prescriptions from other developed countries increases competition in the United States (HillaryClinton.com).Healthcare Reform to Make America Great AgainThe President-elect Donald Trump, also plans to reduce healthcare costs by limiting the power ofdrug companies. Trump claims that “though the pharmaceutical industry is in the private sector, drug companies provide a public service,” reflecting the deontological view that pharmaceutical companies have a moral obligation to serve the public (Donald J. Trump).Both Trump and Clinton believe the industry needs to become more competitive to lower drug prices. Trump agrees with Clinton that “allowing consumers access to imported, safe and dependable drugs from overseas will bring more options to consumers.” He also believes the lobbying power of big drug companies has prevented reform, stating: “Congress will need the courage to step away from the special interests and do what is right for America.” As drug
companies spend more money on lobbying than any other industry, about $229 million in 2014, Trump claims the pharmaceutical industry holds significant influence over lawmakers ().