Senator Dan Wolf
Massachusetts Cape & Islands District
Senator Wolf calls for pharmaceutical companies to buy back confiscated or unused drugs
Testimony before special Senate Committee

In testimony before the Senate Special Committee on Drug Abuse and Treatment Options in the Commonwealth, delivered today at Cape Cod Community College, Cape and Islands Senator Dan Wolf (D-Harwich) called for legislation requiring pharmaceutical companies to buy back drugs they manufacture that are either confiscated by law enforcement or returned unused by consumers.

“As we’re too well aware, prescription drugs are flooding our streets, sold and re-sold illegally but extensively,” said Wolf’s prepared remarks. “These drugs were manufactured by a pharmaceutical company that is clearly identifiable. These drugs ostensibly were sold by that company’s representatives to physicians or other health care facilities at a profit. That profit is retained by the pharmaceutical company regardless of whether these drugs are over-prescribed, whether they are re-sold, and regardless of where they wind up.

“Establishing a mandatory buy-back program for confiscated or surrendered prescription drugs, administered by the Department of Public Health,
would create revenue support for treatment and prevention programs. It would diminish the profit pharmaceutical companies now accrue even when the drugs they manufacture and sell wind up inflicting great harm rather than the good for which they’re intended. It would create a financial incentive for those companies to better monitor their sales. And it would create an incentive for those companies to make sure providers are not over-prescribing, to avoid having to pay rebates for unused drugs.”

A full transcript of Senator Wolf’s remarks is attached.