Californians for Lower Drug Prices Launches TV Ad Campaign

In Advocacy, News by AHF

Series of 15- & 30-Second Ads Begin Airing Statewide Today, Primary Election Day

SACRAMENTO, CA – Even as voters go to the polls to finish up the primary election season, supporters of Californians for Lower Drug Prices, proponent of the California Drug Price Relief Act of 2016, today have begun airing a series of television ads urging Californians to “Stand up to the outrageous greed of the drug companies” by voting yes on the measure, which is on the November ballot. The campaign is airing 15- and 30-second versions of ads entitled “Stand Up” and “Greed” in cable markets statewide.

The ads, which can be found at, note that prescription drug costs are out of control and it is time to stop the drug price-gouging, but that drug companies are spending millions to block action in the Legislature. “It’s up to the people of California. This November we can ensure California gets a fair deal for prescription drugs,” says the 30-second version of “Stand Up.” The 15-second version adds, “It’s time to stand up to this price-gouging. To bring down prescription drug prices, vote YES on the Drug Price Relief Act.”

In “Greed,” a registered nurse named Donna exclaims that she is mad as hell about drug pricing. “Greed is not good when it comes to life-saving medications — in fact, it kills,” she says in the 30-second version of the ad. “Gilead charges $1000 for one hepatitis pill, which means that most people can’t get it.” She also says “the drug companies will spend $100 million in November to defeat an initiative to lower drug prices. That’s obscene greed.”

“Californians need to know that the drug cartel is going to spend $100 million to protect their price-gouging and obscene profits by confusing and misleading voters into voting against this measure,” said Garry South, lead strategist for the drug-price initiative. “Californians of all stripes, even Republicans, want their leaders to do something about the high price of life-saving drugs, but Big Pharma has a stranglehold on the Congress and the Legislature. This simple and effective measure is the only real way for Californians to fight back against Pharma’s price-gouging in 2016. It will save California billions in overcharged drug purchases on life-saving medicine that sick people need to survive.”

The Drug Price Relief Act would require the state of California to negotiate with drug companies for drug prices that are no more than is paid for the same drugs by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA).  Unlike Medicare, the VA negotiates for drug prices on behalf of the nearly 22 million veterans it serves, and pays on average 20-24 percent less for medications than other government agencies, and up to 40 percent less than Medicare Part D.  The Drug Price Relief Act empowers the state, as the healthcare buyer for millions of Californians, to negotiate the same or an even better deal for taxpayers, saving the state billions.

Watch “Stand Up”:

Watch “Greed”:

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