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CNBC Excerpts: CNBC Exclusive: Merck Chairman & CEO Ken Frazier Speaks with CNBC's Meg Tirrell Today on "Power Lunch"

WHEN: Today, Thursday, April 16th

WHERE: CNBC's "Power Lunch"

Following are excerpts from the unofficial transcript of a CNBC EXCLUSIVE interview with Merck Chairman & CEO Ken Frazier on CNBC's "Power Lunch" (M-F, 1PM-3PM ET) today. Video from the interview will be available on

All references must be sourced to CNBC.


We are seeing with these pd1 drugs and pdl1 drugs - I think we are just scratching the surface. There are a number of other breakthroughs behind this. And I think this field of immunotherapy is very young for cancer, but we will see great drugs going forward.


The insurance industry is responding for example to the latest guidance from the federal government that when we set up these plans, we can't have them set up in such a way that patients can't afford their medicines or that the co-insurance or co- pays is too large. I think that's been an issue under the exchanges. But I think we have to remember we are very early in the experience. As an industry association, what we stand for is the idea that patients should have real access to breakthrough medicines and that access has to be affordable. Because if it's not affordable, they really don't have meaningful access.


We want to do deals for one of two reasons. Either because we want to get the next wave of science or we want to build on areas where we have a leadership role right now – like diabetes, like vaccines, like infectious diseases, like cancer – so you will see us do bolt on acquisitions aimed at those spaces where we're either leading or where we aspire to lead going forward. We're not interested in the very large, consolidation-type deals.

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