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Merkley | Americans have been ripped off by drug companies for too long | East Oregonian

Every year, I hold a town hall in every Oregon county. From coast to grasslands, Gorge to high desert, blue to red, there is one consistent issue that Oregonians ask me to address — the price of prescription drugs.

Albert, in Linn County, pays $800 per dose for his wife’s immunosuppressant medication. I don’t know too many Oregonians who can sustain that, and Albert’s worried that soon, the family won’t be able to afford for her to continue taking that medication. It’s the same story all over. T.J., from Klamath Falls, needs medication to manage his rheumatoid arthritis condition and it costs almost $5,500 per dose. If that sounds ridiculous, it is. In Canada, the same drug costs $1,800 per dose. These aren’t isolated examples. It’s common for drugs to be up to 10 times more expensive here than in other developed countries.

I held a recent AARP tele-town hall, and more than 1,650 seniors living all across the state called in about their concern over the rising costs of drugs. From digging into savings to pay for medications to not taking full doses of medication to make it stretch farther, seniors in Oregon are suffering real consequences because of the exorbitant cost of drugs.

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Merkley | Americans have been ripped off by drug companies for too long | Columnists | eastoregonian.com.

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