Newt Gingrich Backs Price Transparency for Medical Devices

Newt Gingrich, former speaker of the House and possible presidential candidate, is calling for transparency of prices for medical devices from hip implants to stents, according to a report by DOTmed.

In a column, Mr. Gingrich said Congress should ban exclusivity agreements between device makers and medical providers making their agreed-upon prices confidential. This makes "true price competition in the $153 billion medical-device marketplace impossible" and prices can be marked up "hundreds of percentage points," Mr. Gingrich said.

He cited a 2009 report from McKinsey Global Institute showing hip implants cost 60 percent more in the United States than in several major European countries. In 2007, however, Congress failed to pass a bill that would have required implantable device makers to report sales data to the government.

Read the DOTmed report on medical devices.

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