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Bill would make drug price gouging a federal crime

San Francisco Chronicle, December 7, 2011
Price gouging on prescription drugs already in short supply would become a federal crime under legislation about to be introduced. Sen. Charles E. Schumer, D-NY, said he's proposing a bill that that would give the U.S. Department of Justice authority to crack down on "unscrupulous drug distributors" who sell hospitals life-saving prescription medicines in short supply at huge markups. The problem has been growing this year, as shortages have dramatically worsened for normally cheap generic injected medicines that are the lifeblood of hospitals: drugs for cancer, pain, infections, even liquid nutrition and anesthesia for surgery.