Wednesday, July 27, 2022 | Kaiser Health News

Wednesday, July 27, 2022 |  Kaiser Health News
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To Resolve Veteran Hearing Loss Lawsuit, 3M Sets Aside $1B

NBC News reports on how a lawsuit centering on earplug protection for US service makers has impacted maker 3M. The high income of health care CEOs, sales of new heart drugs, GSK’s profits, Biogen’s ALS therapy, health insurance pricing data, and more are also in industry news.

In other industry news —

Stat: Health Care’s High Rollers: As The Pandemic Raged, CEOs’ Earnings Surged

The CEOs of approximately 300 health care companies collectively took home more than $4.5 billion in 2021, according to a STAT analysis of hundreds of financial filings. Regeneron Pharmaceuticals CEO Leonard Schleifer represented 10% of that total on his own, pulling in an astounding $453 million. (Herman, Sheridan, Parker, Feuerstein and Ravindranath, 7/18)

The Washington Post: Opioid Maker Teva Agrees To Attempt $4.25 Billion Deal

If the deal is finalized, the company would pay $3 billion in cash and $1.2 billion in donated Narcan, the overdose-reversing drug, over 13 years. Approximately $100 million would be distributed to the tribes. The sum includes $650 million that the company already agreed to pay when settling cases with Texas, Florida, West Virginia and others. (Kornfield, 7/27)

The Wall Street Journal: Drugmakers Hope New Heart Drugs Boost Sales, Revive Market

The once lucrative heart-drug market is now poised to make a comeback, but at the cost of heavy investments in research and deal making. After watching lower-priced generics sixteen sales of once-highflying blood-pressure, cholesterol and other heart drugs, companies struggled to discover replacements and then win reimbursement for five-figure prices. Drugmakers are now rolling out new medicines, though their commercial prospects are uncertain. (Hopkins, 7/26)

Reuters: GSK Lifts Full-Year Forecast, Days After Consumer Health Spin-Off

GSK (GSK.L) on Wednesday lifted its full-year forecast, boosted by reinvigorated demand for its blockbuster Shingrix vaccine, days after overhauling the business with the spin-off of its consumer health unit. GSK now expects 2022 sales to rise 6% to 8% and adjusted operating profit to increase by 13% to 15%, excluding any contributions from the company’s COVID-19 solutions business. (7/27)

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Stat: American Cancer Society’s VC Arm Partners With Third Rock

Cancer startups aren’t exactly underfunded — as a disease area, oncology has commanded investors’ attention for the last decade. But the American Cancer Society sees gaps. “Oncology actually is very well-resourced and invested in. The challenge is, is the money going to the areas where there’s the greatest impact?” said Alice Pomponio, the managing director of the society’s venture capital arm, BrightEdge. (DeAngelis, 7/26)

Stat: Cue Health Rode Covid To A $3 Billion Valuation. Now It Faces A Rocky Future

It didn’t have the brand recognition of Abbott, or the billions of the medical technology multinational Becton Dickinson. Before the pandemic hit, Cue Health didn’t even have a product on the market. What the fledgling company did have in July 2020 was a deal to provide its newly authorized Covid-19 test for the National Basketball Association’s highly publicized bubble. (Palmer, 7/27)

Reuters: BioNTech, Pfizer Sue CureVac In US Over COVID-19 Vaccine Patent Claims

July 26 (Reuters) – COVID-19 vaccine maker BioNTech (22UAy.DE) said on Tuesday that it and partner Pfizer (PFE.N) have filed a complaint with the US District Court in Massachusetts, seeking a judgment that they did not infringe US patents held by rival CureVac (5CV.DE). The lawsuit, filed Monday, said CureVac is trying to profit from the success of BioNTech and Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccines after CureVac’s efforts to create its own vaccine failed. (Burger, 7/26)

Also —

Reuters: US FDA Accepts Biogen’s ALS Therapy For Review

Biogen Inc’s (BIIB.O) treatment for a rare type of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) was accepted for review by the US health regulator, weeks after follow-up analyzes of data from a failed late-stage study suggested the drug was likely to work. (7/26)

On the costs of health care —

KHN: Bill Of The Month: The Ambulance Chased One Patient Into Collections

In retrospect, Peggy Dula said, she shouldn’t have taken the ambulance. She was the least injured of the three siblings who were in a car when it was struck by a pickup truck last September. Her daughter had even offered to come to the crash site and pick her up. Jim Martens, 62, and Cynthia Martens, 63, Peggy’s brother and sister, were more seriously hurt and on their way to the hospital in separate ambulances. Peggy, 55, was told it would be a good idea for her to get checked out, too. So she accepted a ride with a third ambulance crew. (Sable-Smith, 7/27)

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