By Advocate.com Editors
Originally published on Advocate.com August 06 2003 11:00 PM ET
Officials with several state-run AIDS Drug Assistance Programs have negotiated $65 million in price cuts for anti-HIV drugs from eight major pharmaceutical companies, The Wall Street Journal reports. The cuts were sought to help the financially struggling programs avoid having to reduce the number of drugs they provide or enact enrollment restrictions. Fifteen ADAPs already have waiting lists or other restrictions because of budget shortfalls. The cuts were negotiated on behalf of all state and territorial ADAPs by program officials from California, Florida, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, and Texas. Those states account for 75% of the nation's annual ADAP spending. Cuts were agreed to by drugmakers Bristol-Myers Squibb, Roche, GlaxoSmithKline, Merck, Pfizer, Abbott Laboratories, Boehringer Ingelheim, and Gilead Sciences. The companies and the ADAP directors agreed not to reveal the specific price discounts, but ADAP officials say the cuts apply to the most commonly used anti-HIV medications, including Roche's fusion inhibitor Fuzeon and Bristol-Myers Squibb's new protease inhibitor Reyataz.