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Top of the morning to you, and a fine one it is. Although quite chilly so far, the clear, blue skies and warm sunshine are a heartening elixir for a busy day ahead. For instance, we are scheduled to have a lively discussion about weight-loss drugs. To cope, we are brewing fresh cups of stimulation. Our choice today is orange creme. As always you are invited to join us. Meanwhile, here are a few items of interest to get you started on your own journey, which we hope will be informative and exciting. Keep in touch, everyone….

The Congressional Budget Office forecast that Medicare will likely choose the obesity drug semaglutide for price negotiation “within the next few years,” STAT writes, noting this could curb the cost of legislation requiring Medicare coverage and increase the chances of Congress actually passing such a bill. Right now, Medicare by law cannot cover obesity drugs, though it will pay for seniors to take the same medicines for conditions like diabetes and heart problems. Legislation that would do away with the broader coverage restriction has not gained traction, mostly because it would cost the government. The price of a four-week supply of Wegovy and Zepbound ranges from about $1,100 to $1,300.


As more states create dedicated boards to cap the costs of medicines, some drugmakers and their allies are pushing back with a controversial tactic — lobbying for legislation to set exemptions for so-called orphan drugs, which are used to combat rare diseases that afflict relatively small groups of patients, STAT explains. The efforts reflect concerns that patients may lose access to these medicines if drug companies halt sales or decide not to invest in developing such drugs. But opponents argue blanket exceptions would unnecessarily extend to numerous big-selling treatments for common conditions that — thanks to regulatory endorsements — also happen to have an orphan designation.

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