4 Aug 2007

Stealing from the Sick

Abbott has been charging $2,200 (£1,100) a year for Kaletra in Thailand, which is - by macabre coincidence - roughly the same as the gross income per capita. I am no economist, but it seems to me that if you charge people's entire annual income for a drug like that, then your customers will die.

Don't pharmaceutical companies need to charge high fees, to recoup their research costs, and develop new ideas? Yes, they do, so let's be fair. And if we're going to be really fair, we might also mention that they spend twice as much on administration and advertising as they do on research.

Great article in today's Guardian on the evils of big pharm, every week or so we see sick and dying people before the TV cameras asking the government to buy them drugs.

What is forgotten is the huge profit margins, you can sell for a high price, when a patent gives you a monopoly and demand is pretty inelastic when you need a drug to survive

Curses there doesn't seem to be a link but here is a bad science article on the general theme here


CommanderKeen said...

So how do you balance your recognition for the need for pharmaceuticals with your opposition to vivisection? You wouldn't have the one without the other?

Derek Wall said...

Health care does not have to involve animal experiments, though there is vigorous debate on the issue.

debate around the ways that big pharm enjoys supernormal profits via their monopoly power occurs far less, which is why I put this link in.

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