Starting June 1, China will lift regulatory controls and let market set prices on most drugs — Can the U.S. do the same?

Peace and Freedom

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 Credit Lucy Nicholson/Reuters

The Associated Press

Chinese regulators say they will lift price controls on most medical drugs starting June 1 in hopes that a more market-driven pricing system will keep medical costs in check.

The National Development and Reform Commission announced Tuesday that it would abandon the decades-long practice, except for narcotics and some psychological drugs, as part of drug price reform.

The commission says it will leave the setting of drug prices to market competition.

Chinese consumers have long complained of high drug costs. Authorities have in the last couple of years cracked down on rampant bribery by pharmaceutical companies which had inflated drug prices.

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New York Times Editorial

A drug to treat abnormal heart rhythms can cost about $200 on one day and more than $1,300 the next. A diagnosis of multiple sclerosis can lead to a drug bill of at…

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