Martin Shkreli Pleads The Fifth During Congressional Hearing On "Skyrocketing" Drug Prices - Live Feed

Update: Martin Shkreli has pleaded the Fifth amendment right against self-incrimination during the hearing.

Everyone's favorite pharma "bro" Martin Shkreli is set to testify before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform on Thursday morning. 

The purpose of the hearing, as delineated on the committee's website is as follows: 

  • To discuss methods and reasoning behind recent drug price increases.
  • To discuss the role of pharmacy benefit managers in negotiating drug prices, and address concerns about the lack of transparency in pricing contracts. 
  • To discuss impediments to a timely review and approval of generic drug applications, and how the government can improve the efficiency and competitiveness in the market. 

Live feed:

Also present will be Howard B. Schiller, interim CEO of Valeant and Janet Woodcock Director, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research for the FDA. Here are the background bullet points:

  • The wholesale price for thirty of the top-selling U.S. drugs increased 76 percent between 2010 and 2014, which represents eight times the general inflation rate.
  • Pharmaceutical companies cite, among other things, shareholder accountability and high research and development costs as reasons for price increases.
  • Industry analysts have cited “declining market competition” as one of the factors driving recent drug price increases.  
  • Generic drugs, which can cost eighty to eighty-five percent less than their brand equivalents, historically have played an important role in the health care marketplace by offering a lower-cost alternative to brand drugs.
  • However, the number of generic drug applications submitted to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is outpacing approved applications by a three to one margin with approximately 3,800 applications still awaiting action.  
  • Under the Generic Drug User Fee Amendments of 2012, the FDA will receive approximately $1.5 billion over five years from industry fees to speed the public’s access to safe and effective generic drugs.

Below, find a new memo which traces Shkreli's decision to jack up the price of Daraprim by 5,000% last September.

Memo on Turing Documents