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10 Best Selling Drugs

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It typically takes 10-12 years to introduce a new drug into the market - i.e., from the initial discovery stage to regulatory approval - and it costs the drugmakers an average of $2.6 billion.

The rising prescription drug prices are posing a huge problem for the healthcare system in the United States. On average, an American spends about $1,200 on prescription drugs a year, according to a report by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

In a list of top 20 expensive prescription drugs in the U.S., compiled by GoodRx, a medical app, which helps find the lowest cost pharmacy for prescriptions, Actimmune, costing $52,000 per month, tops the list, followed by Myalept ($46,328) in the second spot, and Daraprim ($45,000) in the third place. This list excludes drugs that are administered under the supervision of a healthcare provider.

Unlike other countries, the U.S. allows manufacturers of pharmaceutical drugs to set their own prices for the drugs they develop.

The Trump administration has been consistently emphasizing the need to reduce the price of prescription drugs and has vowed to bring transparency in healthcare.

Early this year, the Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and Inspector General Daniel Levinson proposed a rule to lower prescription drug prices and out-of-pocket costs by encouraging manufacturers to pass discounts directly on to patients.

Despite the Trump administration taking steps to curb the rising drug prices, the drugmakers continue to ratchet up the prices. In January of this year, "over three dozen drugmakers hiked the prices on hundreds of medications", according to The Wall Street Journal.

Commenting on the government's efforts in curtailing the drug pricing, Robert Field, Professor of law and public health at Drexel University, says, "It's like a chronic condition that flares up every decade or two and then goes into remission and we don't really do anything to get to the root cause."

The drug companies may hike their drugs' prices due to various factors like shortage of raw materials, problems at manufacturing facilities, natural disasters or reduced competition due to consolidation. But, be that it may, price gouging should never be a company's strategy to boost profitability.

Let's take a look at some of the top-selling drugs of 2018.

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