Drugmaker Boehringer Ingelheim announced Friday that it has implemented a two-year price freeze on its anti-HIV drug Viramune for state-run AIDS Drug Assistance Programs, which provide low-cost drugs to underinsured and uninsured people with HIV/AIDS. "Boehringer Ingelheim currently provides Viramune to ADAPs at a considerable discount. This discount, coupled with the two-year price freeze, are two significant components of our overall effort to help ensure patients in need have access to Viramune," said Boehringer Ingelheim's Sheldon Berkle, executive vice president of marketing and sales. "We are empathetic to the current budget issues facing ADAP and are pleased to offer our assistance during this challenging time." The company also offers some low-income HIV-positive people free supplies of Viramune through its patient-assistance program.
The Viramune price freeze comes on the heels of a series of agreements between ADAP officials in California, Florida, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, and Texas and anti-HIV drugmakers Gilead Sciences, Abbott Laboratories, and Merck announced earlier this week. ADAP officials are continuing to negotiate for price cuts or prize freezes on HIV antiretroviral drugs with Pfizer/Agouron, GlaxoSmithKline, and Bristol-Myers Squibb.