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BigPharmaBro

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Did you just jack up the price of my meds again

John Doe

I dunno lemme check…

BigPharmaBro

BigPharmaBro

Dude, why do you do this to me?

John Doe

Cos you're gonna pay it though, right?

BigPharmaBro

I'm going to FUCKING DIE if i DON'T TAKE THEM

John Doe

Cool

BigPharmaBro

Remember no personal checks

BigPharmaBro

Fuck you man 😡

John Doe
 

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Information

Pharmaceuticals and health products (not including insurance) make up the most profitable industry sector in the world. 1 Unlike in many other commercial industries, the price drug corporations charge for any given drug has nothing to do with the cost of its production, including the cost of clinical trials. Nor do drug prices have anything to do with how effective they are. 2 Rather, because the pharma industry is selling its products almost exclusively to private insurance companies and state-run health programs in countries like England or Norway, drug prices are based on a single priority: charge each buyer as much as they can possibly pay, while ensuring that no country or insurance provider pays so little that other countries or providers demand the same affordable price. 2, 5

Because Medicare, the U.S.’s largest single purchaser of pharma products, is prohibited from negotiating lower drug prices with manufacturers, the prices we see in the U.S. aren’t based on how many tax dollars we can spare for Medicare, but how many dollars private insurance companies can afford to hand over. 2, 4, 5 Even with the discounts some insurance companies negotiate, drug prices in the U.S. are higher than those in other wealthy countries 7 times out of 8. 5

Sources

  1. Chen, L. (2015). The Most profitable Industries in 2015. Forbes. http://www.forbes.com/sites/liyanchen/2015/09/23/the-most-profitable-industries-in-2015/#4b2d0a1a7712
  2. Scannell, J. (2015). Four Reasons Drugs Are Expensive, Of Which Two Are False. Forbes. http://www.forbes.com/sites/matthewherper/2015/10/13/four-reasons-drugs-are-expensive-of-which-two-are-false/#62f7dc9948a5\
  3. Noah, T. (2011). The Make-Believe Billion. Slate. http://www.slate.com/articles/business/the_customer/2011/03/the_makebelieve_billion.html
  4. Luhby, T. (2015). Here’s one fix for high drug prices. CNN Money. http://money.cnn.com/2015/09/28/news/economy/medicare-drug-prices/
  5. Gokhale, K., Langreth, R., and Migliozzi, B. (2015). The U.S. Pays a Lot More for Top Drugs Than Other Countries. Bloomberg. http://www.bloomberg.com/graphics/2015-drug-prices/