The Forces that Shape Prescription Medication Costs

From production to patient, tracing the path to market of five vital treatments to understand issues of affordability and access to treatment

Biologics vs. Biosimilars: How Price Takes a Back Seat

Competition in the market for an auto-immune disease treatment isn't fully realized.



Cell & Gene Therapy: Promising but Pricey

A gene therapy for babies with spinal muscular atrophy improves quality of life but costs $2 million per dose.



HIV Prevention: When Generics Get Crowded Out

A preventive treatment for HIV is highly effective yet remains out of reach for many due to cost.



Insulin: Uneven Progress Toward Affordability

Given that millions of people have diabetes, the marketplace for insulin should be more competitive.



Our Goal Is to Generate Discussion About Access to Vital Medications

Many factors determine the cost of prescription drugs. Pharmaceutical companies play a major role, as do government programs, providers, private insurers and pharmacy benefit managers. To understand the complex market and regulatory forces that influence drug pricing, NORC at the University of Chicago teamed up with Arnold Ventures to examine five pharmaceutical products, tracing the steps of each drug’s development, commercialization and sale to patients.

Each of the medications tells a story about how decisions and actions by key supply chain players impact pricing. By examining the industry, we hope to generate discussion about ways to increase patient access to vital treatments and make them more affordable.