Have you noticed a recent and unexpected increase in your prescription drug medication? There soon may be laws to give you more notification in the future.
The Chicago City Council held a hearing Tuesday on a proposed “Chicago Drug Pricing Transparency Ordinance” led by 14th Ward Alderman Edward Burke.
CBS2 reports the ordinance would require pharmaceutical companies to reveal any price hikes 90 days prior to increases. Additionally, a price review board would be established under the ordinance.
Burke says price-gouging has become an issue in Chicago, citing an analysis pointing to at least 30 different drugs that have increased in price by 76 percent over a period of four years.
The question of price-gouging has been part of the national conversation, particularly about Martin Shkreli, who became infamous for increasing the price of Daraprim (used to treat HIV) from $13.50 to $750 per pill. Shkreli was recently found guilty of three charges of securities fraud and could be facing up to 20 years in prison.
Burke was involved with another pharmacy-regulating proposal earlier this year, as the Chicago Tribune reported on pharmacists urging City Council to improve customer safety.
In 2016, the Tribune discovered 52 percent of 255 pharmacies in the Chicago area did not inform patients of drug information on potentially harmful or fatal effects. Pharmacists complained of long work hours and prioritizing speedy delivery of prescriptions without being given the time to understand how certain medications interact with each other.
Pharmacy lobbyists countered the 2016 proposal as unconstitutional.
Burke’s 14th ward covers parts of Archer Heights, Garfield Ridge, and Brighton Park. He is the longest serving alderman in Chicago’s history, having been first elected to the City Council in 1969.