For years the image of who drives change in our democracy has reflected an old narrative of straight white men in smoky rooms. 

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Judy Chu Wants Transparency on Free Drug Samples

Judy Chu Wants Transparency on Free Drug Samples

The pharmaceutical industry’s impact on medication use is heavily influenced by marketing to doctors which includes free samples of medications. In 2016 alone, pharmaceutical companies gave the equivalent of $13.5 billion in free samples to medical care providers. Congresswoman Judy Chu (D-CA)doesn’t want to stop this practice but, at a minimum, she wants to shed some light on it. She, along with Congressman Devin Nunes (R-CA), introduced the Sunshine for Samples Act last week which would require companies that manufacture drugs, devices, biologics, or medical supplies to publicly make available the number and value of free drug samples given to health care providers and charities each year. As drug prices continue to skyrocket, Chu said Americans deserve to understand exactly what is influencing drug pricing and distribution. “While these samples can be incredibly important to patients both for the purposes of trying a new drug to determine effectiveness or for helping patients afford high-cost drugs, there could also be a distorting influence to that many samples,” said Chu. “These samples may be doubling as marketing tools to influence doctors and patients alike, and so we need more transparency and data to learn more about the quantities of the products companies provide, just as we have for other possibly distorting payments from drug manufacturers.” The measure dictates that the data would be posted on the Open Payment Database, a consumer tool that has already made public all fees, research payments, meals, and other transfers of value between the drug and device manufacturers and the medical community, but which currently exempts samples

Alma Adams and Lauren Underwood Launch Black Maternal Health Caucus 

Alma Adams and Lauren Underwood Launch Black Maternal Health Caucus 

Cory Booker and Jim Clyburn Intro Sweeping Anti-Poverty Bill

Cory Booker and Jim Clyburn Intro Sweeping Anti-Poverty Bill