Pfizer has increased prices for 100 drugs, including Viagra, by an average of 9 percent, according to The Financial Times. The move from America’s largest pharmaceutical company, which took effect July 1, came just a month after President Donald Trump addressed drug costs, saying the industry would voluntarily slash prices.
Pfizer increased the price of Viagra by nearly 20 percent, with an average wholesale price of a 100 mg pill jumping to $88.45 from $73.85 at the start of the year. The price of Chantix, a popular smoking-cessation medication, has increased 17 percent in 2018.
Pfizer acknowledged the price increases, while noting it decrease price tags on five medications by 16 to 44 percent.
“The list price remains unchanged for the majority of our medicines. We are modifying prices for about 10 percent of our medicines, including some instances where we’re decreasing the price,” the company said in a statement.
But the summer increase could engender a public backlash. While pharma companies traditionally raised prices twice yearly, some have moved to an annual hike amid growing political pressure.
In May, Trump outlined a general plan to control price inflation by negotiating with pharma companies, controlling prices overseas and attacking pharmacy benefit managers, or PBMs. While his rhetorical has been incendiary—he said pharma companies are “getting away with murder” during the 2016 campaign—his proposals were, for the most part, limited in scope.
“We are not going to reward companies that constantly raise prices, which, in the past, has been most companies,” Trump said. “Frankly, Alex used to run one of them, so nobody knows the system better than Alex. That’s what we needed.”