NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF LEGISLATION submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
BILL NUMBER: A6606
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the general business law, in relation
to the price gouging of pharmaceuticals
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Section 1. Defines pharmaceuticals; provides that no manufacturer or
wholesaler can sell a pharmaceutical at an unconscionably excessive
price; gives court discretion to determine unconscionably excessive
price; allows the Office of the New York State Attorney General the
ability to file a motion to cease sale of a pharmaceutical at unlawful
price; allows the court to impose a maximum penalty of $1,000,000 and
possible restitution to those aggrieved.
Section 2. This act shall take effect immediately.
There is minimal regulation on the pricing of pharmaceuticals. In the
United States, a system has developed where drug companies are putting
profits ahead of people's health. Based on this price-gouging, accessi-
bility to medicine is becoming a serious problem. One example is
epinephrine, an injection of which is used to treat anaphylactic shock.
In 2007, the average cost of a two-pack of epinephrine auto-injectors
for those with medical insurance was $94. Today, the price of the treat-
ment for those with medical insurance has steadily risen to more than
Another example is the anti-parasitic drug, Daraprim. After an acquisi-
tion in August of 2015, the price of the drug was raised from $13.50 a
tablet to $750 a tablet. Those with medical insurance are now paying
anywhere from $1,000 to $16,000 in co-pays for a bottle of Daraprim.
This legislation is intended to give regulatory oversight to the NYS
Attorney General in order to create equal access and affordability to
pharmaceuticals for all New Yorkers.
2015-16: S8182B - Rules
BILL NO A10527
05/04/2018 referred to consumer affairs and protection
This act will take effect immediately.
STATE OF NEW YORK
2019-2020 Regular Sessions
March 14, 2019
Introduced by M. of A. CRESPO -- read once and referred to the Committee
on Consumer Affairs and Protection
AN ACT to amend the general business law, in relation to the price goug-
ing of pharmaceuticals
The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-bly, do enact as follows:
1 Section 1. The general business law is amended by adding a new section
2 396-rrr to read as follows:
3 § 396-rrr. Price gouging; pharmaceuticals. 1. For the purposes of
4 this section, "pharmaceuticals" shall mean any compound manufactured for
5 sale as a medicinal drug.
6 2. No manufacturer or wholesaler of pharmaceuticals shall sell or
7 offer to sell pharmaceuticals for an amount which represents an uncon-
8 scionably excessive price. Whether a price is unconscionably excessive
9 is a question of law for the court.
10 3. The court's determination that a violation of this section has
11 occurred shall be based on any of the following factors:
12 (a) that the amount of the excess in price is unconscionably extreme;
13 (b) that there was an exercise of unfair leverage or unconscionable
14 means; or
15 (c) a combination of both factors.
16 4. In any court proceeding commenced pursuant to this section, proof
17 that a violation of this section has occurred shall include evidence
19 (a) the amount charged represents a gross disparity between the market
20 price of the pharmaceutical that led to the action under this section
21 and the price of the same pharmaceutical over the six months prior to
22 the price change that led to the action under this section; or
23 (b) the amount charged grossly exceeded the price at which the pharma-
24 ceuticals were readily obtainable by other purchasers.
EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
 is old law to be omitted.
A. 6606 2
1 5. A defendant may rebut a prima facie case with evidence that addi-
2 tional costs not within the control of the defendant were imposed on the
4 6. Where a violation of this section is alleged to have occurred, the
5 attorney general may apply in the name of the people of the state of New
6 York to the supreme court within the judicial district in which such
7 violation is alleged to have occurred, on notice of five days, for an
8 order enjoining or restraining commission or continuance of the alleged
9 unlawful acts. In any such proceeding where a violation is found to have
10 occurred, the court shall impose a civil penalty in an amount not to
11 exceed one million dollars and, where appropriate, order restitution to
12 aggrieved consumers.
13 § 2. This act shall take effect immediately.