The chairman of the Federal Trade Commission says eliminating lucrative patent settlements between brand-name and generic drug companies would save consumers $3.5 billion annually.
The FTC has waged a years long campaign against so-called “pay-to-delay” settlements, in which a branded drug company rewards a generic competitor for keeping cheaper versions of its drugs off the market.
While the FTC calls the deals anticompetitive, they have been upheld by courts.
In a speech in Washington, FTC Commissioner Jon Leibowitz calls on Congress to pass a bill banning the settlements. He says it could save consumers $35 billion over 10 years, about $12 billion of which would go to the government.