Trump blasts drugmakers, payers for high U.S. drug prices

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday blasted drugmakers, health insurers and pharmacy benefits managers for making prescription drugs unaffordable for Americans, saying his government would take steps to increase competition and bring down prices.

Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar listens as U.S. President Donald Trump delivers a speech about lowering prescription drug prices from the Rose Garden at the White House in Washington, U.S., May 11, 2018. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Trump said his administration would eliminate the “middlemen” in the drug industry who became “very very rich”, and said the pharmaceutical lobby is making an “absolute fortune” at the expense of American taxpayers.

“This is a total ripoff and we are ending it,” Trump said in a speech delivered as his health deputies released a series of proposals to address high drug costs.

Reporting by Yasmeen Abutaleb; editing by Bill Berkrot

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