PENNINGTON – U.S. Senator Bob Menendez today called Bob Hugin’s decision to sell a life-saving cancer drug in Russia for almost half the U.S. price “outrageous” and “despicable.”
The comments by the New Jersey Democrat came a day after NJ.com reported that Celgene, the pharmaceutical company Hugin ran, cut the price of Revlimid by about 45% in Russia while raising the cost of the same drug in the United States by 20%.
“If you can lower the costs of drugs in Russia, the same drug you’re selling here, you can lower the cost in the United States,” Menendez said.
Menendez said that Hugin chose not to do that, but instead to “make a profit off of Americans but give a break to Russia.”
“That’s just really outrageous. I think it’s pretty despicable,” the senator said. “I don’t know how he sleeps at night having made a killing off of cancer patients.”
Commissioner of Health Shereef Elnahad, who attended a New Jersey Spotlight forum on healthcare this morning with Menendez and U.S. Senator Cory Booker, told the Nee Jersey Globe that the state needs to “seek creatives solutions to reduce drug prices.”