About

Dr. Bach’s Drug Pricing Lab (DPL) at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center focuses on the development of rational approaches to drug pricing and health insurance coverage that encourage innovation while ensuring patient access and affordability. The DPL focuses its efforts on four major work streams:

  1. Research on the current state of U.S. drug pricing and its effects
  2. Development of solutions to align drug prices with value
  3. Pilot programs to test solutions in real world settings
  4. Evidence-based and unbiased resources for policy makers

All research and findings of the DPL are made publicly available. The DPL receives funding from the Laura and John Arnold Foundation and Kaiser Permanente.

Team

Dr. Peter B. Bach

Director of Memorial Sloan Kettering's Center for Health Policy and Outcomes

Peter B. Bach is a physician, epidemiologist, researcher, and healthcare policy expert on the cost and value of drugs in the United States. As the Director of Memorial Sloan Kettering’s Center for Health Policy and Outcomes, Dr. Bach leads a world class academic team of researchers and analysts.

Through the Drug Pricing Lab, he and his team work to educate policymakers, healthcare professionals, industry officials, and patients on drug development and pricing. Their work is aimed at promoting reforms based on evidence and research to reduce the high cost of drugs in the U.S. healthcare system while ensuring innovation for the future.

In 2015, Dr. Bach released DrugAbacus, the first ever interactive tool to help determine the price of a cancer drug based on its value compared with the price assigned by the pharmaceutical company. The online DrugAbacus pricing tool allows the user to manipulate various elements that contribute to pricing, such as cost of research, improved outcomes versus earlier drugs, and side effects. It demonstrates that it is possible to arrive at an evidence driven, value-based price focused on the patient.

Dr. Bach is a regular speaker, writer, and sought-out expert on the topic of drug pricing in the United States, and his work has become foundational for in-depth reporting on the topic. Dr. Bach has published more than 100 peer-reviewed articles and editorials in scientific journals such as the New England Journal of Medicine and the Journal of the American Medical Association. As a pulmonologist, Dr. Bach has also been a pioneering researcher in the areas of lung cancer screenings, tobacco use guidelines, cancer care delivery in Medicaid, and confronting racial and ethnic disparities in healthcare and lung cancer treatment.

He served as a Senior Advisor to the Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) in 2005 and 2006, and later as Chair of the CMS Expert Panel that developed quality measures for cancer hospitals. He is currently the Vice Chair of the CMS MEDCAC and a regular speaker at bipartisan congressional health policy meetings and conferences.

Dr. Bach completed his undergraduate studies at Harvard University and his medical studies at the University of Minnesota and the University of Chicago Harris School. He is triple board-certified having completed a residency in internal medicine at Johns Hopkins University followed by a fellowship in pulmonary and critical care medicine at the University of Chicago and Johns Hopkins. While at the University of Chicago, he was a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholar. Dr. Bach has been a faculty member of Memorial Sloan Kettering’s Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics since 1998, and a Senior Scholar at the International Agency for Research on Cancer since 2008. He is a member of the National Academy of Medicine.

 

Anna Kaltenboeck

Program Director

Ms. Kaltenboeck is the program director of the Center for Health Policy and Outcomes and the Drug Pricing Lab at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. Her work focuses on the development and application of value-based pricing methods, as well as policies that foster rational and sustainable drug pricing.

Prior to joining MSKCC, Ms. Kaltenboeck spent 10 years consulting on health economics and outcomes research, as well as pricing and market access for pharmaceutical and diagnostic products. An alumna of both Analysis Group and IMS Consulting Group, the scope of her work spans the US, EU5, and emerging economies. She has published numerous articles in peer-reviewed scientific and policy journals.

Ms. Kaltenboeck holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in economics from Tufts University.

 

Raina H. Jain

Data Assistant

Raina is a data assistant at the Center for Health Policy and Outcomes at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. Her work has focused primarily on Medicare’s Part B payment pilot, as well as differential payment for cancer care across settings.

Raina holds a B.A. in Biology from Columbia University.

Val Pocus

Senior Data Analyst

Val Pocus is a data analyst at the Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. Her work primarily involves visualization and analysis on projects related to drug pricing, cancer outcomes, and medical decision making.
She holds a B.A. from Cornell University and an M.P.H. in Biostatistics from the CUNY School of Public Health.

Zach Helms

Project Coordinator

Zach is from Hot Springs, Arkansas and has focused his work on international differences in prescription drug pricing, cataloging current policy proposals for prescription drug pricing, and maintaining the DrugAbacus project. He holds a BBA in Economics from the University of Central Arkansas.