As the coronavirus continues to terrorize the world, people are pinning their hopes on companies that are doing vaccine and drug research to -- maybe -- get us out of this mess. Yet, many of the companies doing the work, especially Gilead Science, are "the bad guys." Except when we need them. Gilead's drug, remdesivir, is now in clinical trials in China so they're OK for now. Hypocrisy at its finest.
On this week's menu: Why is it harder to get a Chick-fil-A franchise than to get into Stanford? ... The CVS-Aetna monopoly on pharmaceuticals would put John D. Rockefeller's Standard Oil to shame. ... Wind may not be as green an energy sources as we thought. ... And finally, the genes we share: we are more alike than not.
The United States is not the only country where drug pricing is disjointed. Referring to Europe, ACSH advisor Dr. David Shlaes writes that it is "definitely still a tapestry of nations or even the Wild West." Especially in the world of antibiotics.
The cost of pharmaceuticals is high for a number of reasons. A new study considers our out-of-pocket spending and increased use of medications, rather than more expensive surgery or hospitalization as a driver we can control.
The problem of high drug prices is multifaceted and complex. Referring to the pharmaceutical industry employing "crooks" might be good for some cheap applause, but it's demoralizing to the thousands of scientists who work in it. Senator Sanders should apologize.
The Trump Administration now requires drug advertising to provide a medication's list price. Manufacturers that were initially resistant have reconsidered and have agreed. The only group losing here are patients, who are no closer to lower drug prices or better information than before.
The price of insulin continues to rise. But before jumping on du jour soundbites, knowing its history may help explain why our first wonder drug is now a chimeric poster child for the best and worse in the pharmaceutical industry.
When pharmaceutical companies jack up prices, it irritates everybody. And when people are irritated, politicians take the opportunity to do some grandstanding to win votes. Just a few days into its term, the House Oversight Committee in the new Congress has already launched an investigation into drug pricing. Is that justified? Not really.
Epic patent gaming, and pay-for-delay agreements to slow-walk introduction of cheaper generics to market, helped bring us to this point. But will a growing behemoth of 750 hospitals actually lower drug prices?
The pharmaceutical industry does not make a move without knowing what is coming down the pike, or without global projections years into the future. This latest maneuver is standard fare.
The interaction of supply and demand is an initial economic lesson. The FDA approves new drug's safety and efficacy. But it's the payers – Medicare and the insurance companies – that determine the true supply. Before we begin to discuss cost, let's first learn about supply.
Trump officials made a big splash with proposals to curb drug costs. But the benefits may not match the rhetoric from either the administration or Big Pharma. As is often the case, it's a bit more complicated than what we're getting as a first impression.