A Drug Maker Spends Big in Washington to Make Itself Heard
[...] This year, the company left the industry trade group Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, or PhRMA, after the group threatened to kick out companies that did not spend enough on research.
Mallinckrodt, however, has been increasing its spending in another area: It has been writing checks to politicians.
After making meager donations in 2015, the company’s political action committee began raising its contributions for congressional campaigns last year. Lawmakers in both the House and Senate collected $44,000 from Mallinckrodt in 2017’s first quarter, nearly nine times what they got from the company in the same period two years ago.
Mallinckrodt also spent $610,000 lobbying Congress, triple the amount of 2015’s first quarter. The company, which makes pain-control drugs as well as H. P. Acthar, an injectable gel prescribed for multiple sclerosis and other diseases, has lobbied on issues related to opioids, patents, Medicare and other matters, regulatory filings show.
Mallinckrodt is far from unique. This year, a critical and risky one for drug companies, the industry as a whole is ratcheting up campaign donations and its presence on Capitol Hill, a new database compiled by Kaiser Health News shows. [...]biotechnology health care finance health law policy pharmaceuticals regulation