High court weighs drug companies' generics policy

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Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) - Federal regulators are pressing the Supreme Court to stop big pharmaceutical corporations from paying generic drug competitors to delay releasing their cheaper versions of brand-name drugs. They argue these deals deny consumers price declines that can top 90 percent.
   
The Obama administration, backed by consumer groups and the American Medical Association, says these so-called "pay-for-delay" deals profit drug companies, but harm consumers by adding substantially to their drug bills.
   
The pharmaceutical companies say they need to preserve the billions of dollars in revenue from their patented products in order to recover what they spend developing new drugs. And both the large companies and the generic makers say the marketing of generics often is hastened by these deals.
   
The justices will hear the argument Monday.

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