Generic Doxycycline Hyclate Manufacturers Greed

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jimbonita Says:


I am concerned about the shocking price increase associated with my supply of a common antibiotic drug which I may have to take for the remainder of my life.

I have had 5 surgeries on my left thigh starting with a hip replacement in 2009. Everything was healing until May, 2010 when I fell and landed on my hip requiring an extensive revision to the hip and the femuir. In addition to the new joint, titanium rod, plate and clamps were required for the repair. At some point in the process, hairline fractures of the femur just above the knee led to a spontaneous fracture and a repair including added titanium plate, screws, and clamps in August, 2010. In 2012, a seroma caused by the extensive surgeries arose which was surgically repaired in August. Four weeks later a second seroma occurred leading to more surgery and finding a fistula. Cultures taken suggested a bacterial infection which was treated with a daily infusion of an antibiotic for 42 days. Upon completion of the infusion I was put on Doxycycline Hyclate (a generic drug originally developed by Pfizer) with a dosage of two 100 mg capsules daily.

I am enrolled in Medicare and have a good drug benefit (with Medco now Express Scripts) in my supplemental insurance available through my retirement benefits with Lockheed Martin. Basically, prescriptions for short periods or small amounts are handled through pharmacies and maintenance drugs are provided for 90 day amounts. I pay a a co-pay based on a schedule with lower payments for generic drugs. I began the drug in November with a modest monthly purchase. Subsequent purchases are shown and analyzed in the following data provided through 3/19/2013. The data is provided in the following sequence: Source, date, quantity, unit price, price increase from original purchases.
Source Date Qty Unit $ % Increase
CVS 11/12/2012 60 0.129
CVS 12/08/2012 60 0.129 0.0%
CVS 01/10/2013 60 0.129 0.0%
CVS 02/09/2013 60 0.655 407.6%
Medco* 03/12/2013 180 4.155 3121.1%
Publix** 03/19/2013 180 0.720 457.8%
CVS** 03/19/2013 180 0.675 422.9%

* Manufacturer/Supplier: West Ward
** No coupon or membership required.

I had a discussion with a service agent at Medco/Express Scripts after the January prescription and the agent noted my recent purchases of the drug and said they could save me money if I got them a 3 month prescription. I had my doctor fax them a prescription. I found out shortly that it was out of stock and wouldn't be available until the end of February. I called again and was told that it still wasn't available - and there were problems with the suppliers.

When I returned to CVS to refill my needs, I found that the problem apparently was beginning to appear there as well; however, I only took slight notice since my co-pay/cost had only gone from $7.74 to $10. I revisited Medco/Express Scripts in March to see if anything had changed. Their database said the drug was unavailable but I pressed the agent to check the pharmacy. As it turns out, it was available so I had it shipped. I didn't get the price information until I received the prescription on March 18. I was shocked to find that the total cost of the drug had gone to $747.94 or to $4.155/capsule vs. $0.129/capsule in just 2 months. This is an increase of 3121.1% in less than 60 days.

The drug was provided to my supplier by West-Ward, a supplier of generic pharmaceuticals in Eatontown, New Jersey. West-Ward Pharmaceuticals claims it "is one of the top 20 generic prescription medication providers in the US." Doxycycline is in the tetracycline family of antibiotics.

The two March 19th quotes for Publix and CVS were found on the internet at the noted link. Admittedly there is a shortage of the drug - ashp.org/DrugShortages/Current/bulletin.aspx?id=977 - but charging 30 times as much for current available supplies is pure and simply price gouging. This is the sort of action that proves the greed of the pharmaceutical industry. Time to get Medicare authority to negotiate prices for Part D users.

See also: Discuss/doxycycline-hyclate-100-mgs-240157.htm.



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Hosey Says:

Blame the price increase on the FDA crackdown on compounding labs- Labs have been closed or may be manufacturing other drugs

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