Two years ago on this Forbes channel, Scott Gottlieb suggested that Donald Trump’s proposal to import inexpensive prescription drugs from overseas would “offer consumers little relief” from rising drug prices. But that was before Trump became President, named Gottlieb commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, and declared all-out war on pharma companies that continue to push through drug-price hikes. Now Gottlieb seems to be changing his stance.
On Wednesday, Gottlieb announced that the FDA is forming a working group to look at policy options for allowing drug importation in certain circumstances, according to a statement. For example, if there are “sudden, significant price increases that close off channels of availability,” such as when a company increases the price of an old generic drug—and there’s only one version on the market.