U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer calls for FTC probe of 'gray market' drugs

| 15 Feb 2012 | 09:49

    ALBANY — U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer is calling for a federal investigation of so-called "gray market" sales of drugs at inflated prices to hospitals that are facing shortages of some medications. The New York Democrat says these gray market prices can be hundreds of times the normal costs. He wants the Federal Trade Commission to investigate whether there is price gouging of some life-saving drugs, including chemotherapy treatments and blood pressure medications. There is a growing national crisis in the availability of drugs for cancer, infections and other serious ailments. The secondary distributors say they must charge far more because they don't get the big rebates manufacturers give primary distributors. They also have high costs in the legal trade to locate and transport batches of scarce drugs.