Sales of Imported Drugs Drop 80 Percent as Americans Abandon Risky Drug Importation
A Congress out of touch with American consumers is considering making it easier to import drugs from other countries into the US. Yet according to recent data, internet drug sales from Canada have dropped 80 percent over the last 3 years. Growing concerns over the safety of mail-order drug imports and better access to drug benefits through programs like Medicare part D have caused many of the larger Canadian mail order pharmacies to close their doors.
Additionally the declining value of the U.S. dollar relative to other countries has significantly reduced the price differential between the United States and the Canadian and other markets for all goods.
Programs such as the Partnership for Prescription Assistance and the extension of drug benefits through programs like Medicare Part D have been far more effective than risky importation schemes at helping seniors and others get the medicines they need. The sales data clearly show that American consumers have abandoned drug importation schemes. Congress should do the same.
Chart: IMS Health
Table: Bank of Canada, www.bankofcanada.ca/en/rates/exchform.html