Lobbying Alignment

Resolution Text

Resolved: Shareholders request that the Board of Directors commission and publish a third party review within the next year (at reasonable cost, omitting proprietary information) of how Eli Lilly and Company (“Lilly”) reconciles the strong commitments to both innovation and patient access, reflected in Lilly’s statement that it “strike[s] a balance between access and patient affordability, while sustaining investments to research innovative life-changing treatments for some of today’s most serious diseases” 1 --when lobbying and engaging in other policy advocacy activities (both direct and through trade associations).

Supporting Statement:
Lilly states that it “is committed to ensuring you can afford your Lilly insulin,” 2 and says it wants to “help those with diabetes get the medication and care they need.” 3 Though Lilly has a patient access program, there is not solid evidence that these programs reach the most vulnerable patients, with one study finding “l]imited evidence … that co-pay assistance was associated with improved treatment persistence/adherence across various diseases…” 4 In March 2021, Lilly also made headlines for “deceptive trade practice claims” associated with “insulin price-gouging.” 5

Lilly states, “Now more than ever, it’s vitally important that we demonstrate accountability and trustworthiness so we can continue to earn the confidence of patients, healthcare providers and other customers, as well as society as a whole.” 6 However, Lilly has directly lobbied against drug pricing reform that advances affordability, 7 hiring three lobbyists in March 2021 to defeat Democratic drug pricing proposals even while Lilly was under intense scrutiny for insulin price hikes. 8

Lilly’s CEO Dave Ricks is a recent Board Chair for Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (“PhRMA”), which raised nearly $527 million in 2020 and spent roughly $506 million, including donating millions to numerous other organizations for use in opposing congressional drug pricing reform efforts. 9 PhRMA also sits on the Private Enterprise Advisory Council of the American Legislative Exchange Council, which has actively opposed bills to lower the costs of pharmaceuticals (H.R. 3 and its moderate counterpart S. 2534 (both 116th Congress)). 10

Lilly spent $7.5M lobbying in 2021 and $5.3M in 2022 (through October 24). 11

Given Lilly’s extensive direct and indirect lobbying against measures that would make drugs more affordable, investors need to better understand the balance Lilly is striking between its commitments to innovation, on the one hand, and access and affordability, on the other.

For these reasons, we urge shareholders to support the proposal.

1  https://www.lilly.com/policies-reports/public-policy

2  https://www.insulinaffordability.com/

3  https://www.insulinaffordability.com/lilly-diabetes-solution-center

4  https://www.ajmc.com/view/impact-of-co-pay-assistance-on-patient-clinical-and-economic-outcomes

5  https://news.bloomberglaw.com/antitrust/sanofi-lilly-novo-must-face-more-insulin-price-gouging-claims

6  https://www.lilly.com/impact/operating-ethically-and-responsibly

7 https://www.fiercepharma.com/pharma/novo-faces-new-shareholder-suit-for-alleged-collusive-price-fixing

8 https://www.opensecrets.org/news/2021/04/vaccine-access-pharma-lobbying-fight/

9 https://www.opensecrets.org/news/2020/12/pharma-lobby-poured-millions-into-darkmoney-groups/

10 https://www.alecaction.org/update/20-alec-lawmakers-say-no-to-importing-price-controls-and-socialized-m edicine-to-america/

11 https://www.opensecrets.org/orgs/eli-lilly-co/summary?id=d000000166

Lead Filer

Laura Krausa
CommonSpirit Health


Mr. Timothy Dewane
School Sisters of Notre Dame Central Pacific Province