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Specialty drugs' steep price hikes

Adapted from AARP; Chart: Axios Visuals

The cost of specialty drugs has skyrocketed over the last decade, with the cost of 61 widely used drugs almost tripling between 2006 and 2017, according to a new AARP report.

By the numbers: The average annual cost of a specialty drug in 2017 was almost $20,000 more than the median U.S. household income.

  • Specialty drugs are the most expensive class — and their prices are increasing rapidly, with annual increases ranging from 7% to 9.7% between 2012 and 2017.

The bottom line: The market is going to be increasingly driven by the use of specialty drugs, and that's going to be expensive.

Go deeper: The drug pricing maze