Tuesday, March 13, 2018

A Greedy Drug Company Illustrates All That is Wrong with America

Pricing a Critical Drug So High That People Suffer

Capitalism, private enterprise is a great system, but sometimes it doesn't work. A company that has a monopoly on a life saving drug can exploit the market to make huge profits while allowing those who cannot afford the medicine to suffer and die. Such is the case in this nation today.

Since 2013, the price of a 40-year-old, off-patent cancer drug in the U.S. has risen 1,400%, putting the life-extending medicine out of reach for some patients.
Introduced in 1976 to treat brain tumors and Hodgkin lymphoma, lomustine has no generic competition, giving seller NextSource Biotechnology LLC significant pricing power.

Health care workers, you know, the kind of people that actually try and help ailing patients recover are horrified.

Some cancer doctors are taking notice of the price hike. “This is simply price gouging, period,” said Henry S. Friedman, a neuro-oncologist and professor of neurosurgery at Duke University School of Medicine. “People are not going to be able to afford it, or they’re going to pay a lot of money and have financial liability.” He co-wrote an editorial criticizing lomustine’s pricing in The Cancer Letter newsletter in September.
Mallika Weant, a clinical pharmacist in Duke’s brain-tumor clinic, said some of the clinic’s patients have opted for less-costly medications because they can’t afford lomustine. The doses are based on body weight, and some patients must take multiple capsules, adding to the cost. Even insured patients often have to pay for a portion of their medicines out of pocket.

What basically has happened here, as is happening elsewhere, is a greedy uncaring bastard buys the rights to the drug, then raises the price to astronomical levels. If people can't afford, well they should not have gotten a cancer they could not afford to treat.

A nation that allows this is not one that lives up to American ideals. But it is America in 2018.

No comments:

Post a Comment