For Immediate Release
March 8, 2018
Statement from Patients For Affordable Drugs on the Cigna-Express Scripts merger announcement
WASHINGTON, DC – Patients For Affordable Drugs Executive Director, Ben Wakana, issued the following statement regarding the announcement that Cigna plans to buy Express Scripts for more than $50 billion:
“This corporate merger looks like it is more about higher profits for shareholders than lower drug prices for patients.
“The onus is on these two giant corporations to demonstrate and promise that they’ll pass savings along to patients in the form of lower drug prices. Until they do that, we don’t see why the merger should be approved.”
Three pharmacy benefit managers — Express Scripts, CVS/Caremark, and OptumRx — control at least 75 percent of the drug market.
According to Jefferies LLC, the combined operating profit of the three largest PBMs was $10.1 billion in 2015, up 30% from 2013.
The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine recent recommendations on policies to lower drug prices aim to pull back the curtains so consumers and lawmakers can understand drug prices by requiring disclosure on all PBM discounts and rebates.