In case you were wondering, drug companies business plans are designed to separate you from your money—not assure access to medications; provide value or promote good health. In the case of medicine in the 21st century in the U.S. it truly is your money or your life. This was again graphically illustrated by Turing Pharmaceuticals when it raised the cost of a 62 year old medication from $13.50/ pill (over priced at that) to $750/pill.
The drug, called Daraprim, was acquired in August by Turing Pharmaceuticals, a start-up run by a former hedge fund manager. Turing immediately raised the price to $750 a tablet from $13.50, bringing the annual cost of treatment for some patients to hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Turing’s price increase is not an isolated example. While most of the attention on pharmaceutical prices has been on new drugs for diseases like cancer, hepatitis C and high cholesterol, there is also growing concern about huge price increases on older drugs, some of them generic, that have long been mainstays of treatment.
While some price increases have been caused by shortages, others have resulted from a business strategy of buying old neglected drugs and turning them into high-priced “specialty drugs.”
Medicynical Note: Kind of pathetic but that’s what happens when companies use their leverage on the sick and dying.
It leads me to conclude that “medical ethics” and what was once known as the “ethical pharmaceutical industry” no longer exist. It’s really all about money.