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This weekly column offers opinions on the latest pharmaceutical industry news.

For years, drug makers have argued that the rising prices of prescription medicines reflect, in part, the rising costs of discovery and development. Now, President Obama wants to peek behind the pharmaceutical curtain to see for himself.

Buried inside the White House budget proposal released last week is language (on page 62) that would require drug makers to publicly disclose various data, including research and development costs. The administration hopes to use the information as part of a plan to negotiate lower prices for the Medicare drug program, known as Part D.


In doing so, Obama joins a growing list of lawmakers seeking transparency in order to understand drug pricing.

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