Industry News Increased pressure to cut medicine prices and an industry-wide slowdown in consumer health product sales is hurting health care giant Johnson & Johnson.Those factors, along with a bigger tax bill than a year ago, trimmed J&J’s first-quarter profit slightly, but it still gave a rosier financial forecast for the year.The world’s biggest maker of health care products cited its biggest-ever acquisition – the pending $30 billion purchase of Swiss biopharmaceutical company Actelion – for the raised forecast. That deal’s expected to close during the current quarter. J&J also benefited from several smaller acquisitions and from the ongoing restructuring of its medical device segment, begun in early 2016.Revenue was crimped by slower growth in many consumer health product categories and by payers demanding bigger rebates off the prices of certain prescription drugs, Chief Financial Officer Dominic Caruso said in an interview. Caruso said drugs with significant competition, particularly cardiovascular, diabetes and other primary care drugs, were particularly hurt by the pricing pressure.”The diabetes market is very price sensitive, and (net) prices have been declining for some time,” Caruso noted.That’s why J&J has been exploring the sale of its diabetes care businesses, which make test strips and insulin pumps, but… Read full this story
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