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Best of the Blogs, Biotech: Insurance Providers Pledge to Keep Some Benefits, With or Without Supreme Court


Plus, predictions for the big pharmaceutical winners of the next six years.

This column highlights the most interesting and useful biotech news from around the Web every Thursday.

Link: UnitedHealth, Aetna to Retain Some Benefits of Health Law
"UnitedHealth Group Inc. (UNH), Aetna Inc. (AET) and Humana Inc. (HUM) plan to retain some benefits created by the US health care overhaul even if the Supreme Court strikes down the law. The exception: Those involving people with pre-existing illness.

"Customers of UnitedHealth, the largest US health insurer, can keep children on plans until age 26, get free preventive care and won't face lifetime benefit limits, the Minnetonka, Minnesota-based company said yesterday in a statement. The insurer also won't rescind policies except for cases of fraud and will retain a simplified appeals process for denials."

Link: The Biggest-Selling Drug In 2018 Will Be…
"Everyone loves a crystal ball. So once again, there is speculation about which medications will generate the most revenue over the next few years. As you can see, conventional molecules are obviously eclipsed, but that is no great surprise. Nor is the absence of a cholesterol-lowering pill. In any event, here is the ranking, courtesy of EvaluatePharma. The percentage figure refers to the change in projected compounded annual sales growth from 2011 to 2018…"

The Wall Street Journal: Health
Link: Steep Rise in Health Costs Projected
"Economists have been puzzling over whether a three-year slowdown in the growth of health-care spending, prompted by the economy, portends a permanent change. Federal projections indicate that isn't the case."

PharmaTech Talk
Link: Pricing Controversy in Germany
"Germany used to be a golden market for the pharma industry in Europe because the country allowed global pharmaceutical companies to set their own prices for new medicines. However, all good things must come to an end…"

Link: Upsher-Smith embraces biotech with $553M deal to buy Proximagen
"About four years ago, Upsher-Smith Laboratories decided to inject a little biotech personality into its corporate body by way of taking a minority interest in the UK's Proximagen (PRX.L), a developer with a pipeline of CNS projects. Today, the generics company went for the full makeover, agreeing to pay up to $553 million for the remaining shares of Proximagen and vaulting directly into one of the most hazardous arenas in the industry."
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