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Sanders does reasonable pricing again, this week

  Rep. Bernie Sanders is going to offer an amendment this week on the HHS
  appropriations bill, asking that the Department consider a reasonable
  pricing clause when it gives a private firm exclusive rights to federally
  funded research.  The HHS could waive the reasonabe pricing clause, if it
  is determined after public comments that the waiver is in the public
  interest.  This is a sign-on letter for the amendment... about a dozen 
  groups have endorsed the amendment, which is basically the same as the 
  one he offered last August..  The actual text of the amendment will be 
  printed in tommorrow's Congression Record.  
  If you can sign on, please contact Katie Clarke, from Bernie's office
  in Washington DC.  Her number is 202-225-4115.. her email is:
     the letter follows... jamie
  Dear Member of Congress:
  	We are writing to express our support for the Sanders 
  Amendment to the Labor-HHS Appropriation bill restoring the 
  reasonable pricing clause for taxpayer developed drugs.
  	The proposed amendment to the HHS Appropriation bill 
  would be a very modest measure. It would only apply to drugs 
  that were developed by the government, at taxpayer expense. 
  For these taxpayer funded drugs, HHS would require that 
  companies with exclusive rights to the drug abide by the 
  reasonable pricing agreement, in some cases. HHS would have 
  the authority to waive the reasonable pricing agreement in a 
  particular case, if it determines the clause is not 
  	This amendment is a very modest effort to protect the 
  consumer and taxpayer interest in important health care 
  inventions that are paid for by the taxpayers. It is needed 
  to protect the public from having to "pay twice" for 
  inventions, first as taxpayers, and second as consumers. The 
  government spends tens of billions of dollars on research to 
  develop new drugs. In those cases where the government 
  controls the intellectual property rights to a new drug 
  invention, it has the responsibility to protect consumers 
  from price gouging, and taxpayers from a costly form of 
  corporate welfare.
  	The federal government itself is a large consumer of 
  pharmaceutical drugs, as a purchaser or payer of health care 
  services under Medicare, Medicaid, Veterans Services, and 
  many other federal programs, as well as a large employer 
  that provides health care benefits. In these cases, 
  taxpayers first pay for the development of new drugs, and 
  then pay again when the government "buys back" its own 
  technology for these health care programs. This is fiscally 
  	We urge the Congress to support the reasonable pricing 
  amendment, which will protect the consumer and taxpayer 
  interest in government funded inventions.
  James Love / love@tap.org / P.O. Box 19367, Washington, DC 20036
  Voice: 202/387-8030; Fax 202/234-5176
  Center for Study of Responsive Law
     Consumer Project on Technology; http://www.essential.org/cpt
     Taxpayer Assets Project; http://www.tap.org