In December, brand pharmaceutical companies defended themselves before the House Energy and Commerce health panel against complaints over reports, including one by the AARP (which represents 40 million older Americans), that drug prices continued to outstrip inflation in 2009. It is alleged that drug companies are profiteering in advance of anticipated health care reforms. These reforms are anticipated to include government rebates from drug makers and decreased drug prices, which were the subject of earlier negotiations between the pharmaceutical industry and the Obama administration. Many other options still remain under debate, including legalizing the re-importation of medications from overseas.
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