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Hoping to deflect criticism of its pricing, Eli Lilly released data showing that rebates and discounts paid to middlemen are increasingly reducing the list prices charged for its drugs.

The drug maker issued a report indicating list prices for its medicines rose a hefty 14 percent last year, but less than the 16.5 percent increase in 2015. However, the average discounts off US list prices rose to 50 percent from 28 percent over the past five years. As a result, Lilly maintained increases in net prices — after paying rebates and discounts — fell to 2.4 percent from 9.4 percent in 2015 (see page 15).


“Our discounts are now larger than ever,” Lilly chief executive David Ricks wrote in a blog post to announce the report. “… We hope this greater level of transparency makes it easier for patients, physicians, policymakers, and others to understand our pricing and our efforts to help make our medicines affordable for everyone.”

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