Egalet, a small pharmaceutical company, has raised the list price of its painkiller and anti-inflammatory Zorvolex by 70%. A 90-pill bottle of Zorvolex now has a price of $650, up from $383 a year ago, according to Elsevier’s Gold Standard Drug Database.
The big picture: The drug isn’t generating a lot of relative sales, but the move is indicative of the pricing power drug companies still have, especially when drugs change ownership. The 70% price hike took effect on February 1 – the day after Egalet completed its acquisition of Iroko Pharmaceuticals, the company that owned Zorvolex.
Details: Zorvolex’s new list price, which was spotted by a drug price data company Search 46brooklyn, does not include discounts or discounts.
- There is little data on the sales of Zorvolex, a low-dose painkiller that received FDA approval in 2013. Iroko canceled an initial public offering that year, before the official start of sales.
- Egalet accepted acquire Iroko last year, and the resulting company is going through the bankruptcy protection process.
- Egalet is pushing to increase the total revenue of its 6 drugs, including Zorvolex, to at least $80 million per year.
- A new sales team “will target pain medicine physicians, primary care physicians, nurse practitioners, orthopedic surgeons and neurologists in the United States with the goal of raising awareness and increasing adoption of his medication, according to a bankruptcy procedure plan.
The bottom line: Egalet dramatically increased the price of a brand name drug that generic equivalents right after buying the medicine, and as he prepares to persuade doctors to prescribe more medicine.
- Egalet did not respond to several phone calls and emails.