Has The Revolution Come and Gone? The Societal Value of New Psychotropic Drugs

Award Year:
Haiden Huskamp
Mental Health, Comparative Effectiveness Research
New drugs for depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder have been introduced over the past 20 years, leading to better treatment options for patients and improved management of common mental illnesses. But the wide adoption of these drugs has also created rising public expenditures and large profits for the pharmaceutical industry. Many public and private payers, as well as policymakers, question whether the newer drugs are worth their costs, or whether we are paying higher prices for "me-too drugs," reformulations, and expensive marketing and promotion campaigns to increase sales. Haiden A. Huskamp, Ph.D. contends that the key question in assessing the value of newer psychotropic drugs is how the social costs compare with the social benefits. Her project, Has the Revolution Come and Gone? The Societal Value of New Psychotropic Drugs, attempts to answer this question through a broad range of analyses that look at the benefits of the newer drugs versus older ones, how effective the newer drugs are when used in practice, and how factors like marketing and pharmacy management affect their use. Huskamp's findings will identify policy levers that could help increase the value of U.S. psychiatric drug spending.