Good morning, everyone, and how are you today? We are doing just fine, thank you, now that the Pharmalot campus has quieted down. The short person has left for the local schoolhouse for another day of learning and our official mascot is snoozing in some distant corner. This leaves us to the tasks at hand — brewing cups of stimulation (our choice today is cinnamon swirl) and foraging for items of interest. Speaking of which, here is the latest selection. Hope your day goes well and we will see you on Thursday after we pause to observe still more ancient traditions …

During 2017 and 2018, drug makers raised prices on seven widely used medicines by large amounts, but without any new clinical evidence to justify the increases, leading patients and insurers in the U.S. to spend an added $5.1 billion, STAT writes, citing an analysis by the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review. “The findings show that a lot of manufacturers are raising prices by a lot, year over year, because they can,” says Dr. David Rind, chief medical officer at the controversial cost-effectiveness nonprofit.

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