“The Affordable Prescriptions for Patients Through Promoting Competition Act of 2019 strikes a good balance by giving the FTC the clear authority to prosecute cases in which a company has engaged in product hopping, without disincentivizing innovation to improve patient care. 

“I’d like to ask for a commitment from Chairmen Nadler and Cicilline to continue to work with Republicans to enact this and other bipartisan committee legislation to address anti-competitive behavior in prescription drug markets and lower prescription drug costs.

WASHINGTON — Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.), Ranking Member of the House Judiciary Committee, offered the following opening statement at today’s markup of H.R. 5133, the Affordable Prescriptions for Patients Through Promoting Competition Act of 2019.

Below are the remarks as prepared.

Ranking Member Collins: Thank you, Chairmen Nadler and Cicilline, and Ranking Member Sensenbrenner for partnering with me on the Affordable Prescriptions for Patients Through Promoting Competition Act.

Over the past twenty years, we have seen substantial developments, both positive and negative, in the prescription drug markets. Some of the changes led to increased access to public and private funding for the research and development of new medications, the growth of generic drugs and new technology to promote and record patient adherence.

Others, however, have hurt patients and the American health care system. The expansion of pharmacy benefit managers and an increasing lack of transparency in the market have driven drug prices up and decreased patient choices. Pharmaceutical manufacturers have also been abusing our patent system through “product hopping.” Product hopping occurs when a pharmaceutical company reformulates a product without improvements to patient safety, effectiveness or patient care, with the purpose of delaying a generic competitor’s entry into the market. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to determine whether a new product will provide real benefit to patients.

That is why I am happy to partner with Chairmen Nadler and Cicilline and Ranking Member Sensenbrenner on this bipartisan legislation to address the issue of product hopping. The Affordable Prescriptions for Patients Through Promoting Competition Act of 2019 strikes a good balance by giving the FTC the clear authority to prosecute cases in which a company has engaged in product hopping, without disincentivizing innovation to improve patient care.

I’d like to ask for a commitment from Chairmen Nadler and Cicilline to continue to work with Republicans to enact this and other bipartisan committee legislation to address anti-competitive behavior in prescription drug markets and lower prescription drug costs. That includes the four bipartisan bills on drug pricing that were unanimously passed out of this committee on April 30 of this year.

As an original cosponsor of the Affordable Prescriptions for Patients through Promoting Competition Act of 2019, I urge all my colleagues to support this bipartisan bill. I yield back the remainder of my time.