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Drugmakers on Collision Course With Trump as Prices Keep Rising

  • At industry summit, pharma executives cite innovation, value
  • Democrats prepare new bills; Azar says ‘need to see more’ cuts
A machine sorts pills prior to packaging at a Sanofi-Aventis SA factory in Compiegne, France, on Friday, Oct. 8, 2010. Sanofi-Aventis SA's three-month effort to acquire Genzyme Corp. took a more contentious turn as the companies' chief executive officers offered conflicting accounts of their face-to-face meeting last month.
A machine sorts pills prior to packaging at a Sanofi-Aventis SA factory in Compiegne, France, on Friday, Oct. 8, 2010. Sanofi-Aventis SA's three-month effort to acquire Genzyme Corp. took a more contentious turn as the companies' chief executive officers offered conflicting accounts of their face-to-face meeting last month.Photographer: Antoine Antoniol

Two years ago, fear that Donald Trump would clamp down on drug prices roiled the health industry’s biggest annual gathering.

Now, pushback on prices has become part of a new normal for which many pharmaceutical executives have developed a reliable script: Drug costs should reflect the value treatments deliver to patients, they say. Savings shouldn’t come at the expense of innovation. And the companies they run have been restrained and transparent in taking price increases.