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BigPharmaBro

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Martin Shkreli is so dumb lol

BigPharmaBro

BigPharmaBro

I know — what a dick

John Doe

Like he could have raised the price waaaay higher on those meds

BigPharmaBro

Dude.

John Doe

I mean I raise em up way higher than Shkreli

BigPharmaBro

You're the WORST.

John Doe

It's legal dude 😙

BigPharmaBro

... so's being an asshole

John Doe

Exactly 😎

BigPharmaBro
 

It's Time To Change The Conversation Around Big Pharma:

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Information

Pharmaceuticals and health products (not including insurance) make up the most profitable industry sector in the world, and that sector spends more money on lobbying politicians than any other.1, 2, 3, 4 The pharmaceutical lobby has consistently won concessions in regards to Medicare and other insurances’ ability to negotiate drug prices (which is standard in other countries), as well as in regards to FDA oversight of their products; one study found that ever since pharma started making huge donations to the FDA, their review process has sped up, approving substantially more drugs that have later turned out to cause hospitalizations and deaths. 5

Drug corporations make money, not cures. Starting with corporate-friendly changes to patent law in 1980, the pharma industry has been increasingly making its biggest profits not off new cures or innovative treatments, but from “me too” drugs. 6, 7 “Me too” drugs are structurally similar to existing drugs, with minor tweaks; in the U.S., manufacturers can even patent their me-too drugs, even if their tweaks don’t affect the effectiveness of the drug. 6 These drugs allow maximum profit for minimum financial investment, and most pharma companies don’t even deny it: “Our duty is to our shareholders,” said a Valeant spokesperson after jacking up the price of a life-saving heart drug by 525%. 8 To maximize profit from even less innovation, drug corporations are also permitted by law to buy up a smaller company’s drugs or even the company itself, re-brand the drugs it developed, and then sell them at a mark-up that can reach as high as 5,500%. 8,9

Sources

  1. OpenSecrets.org, Lobbying/Health Products industry profile, 2016. http://www.opensecrets.org/lobby/indusclient.php?id=h04
  2. OpenSecrets.org, Lobbying by Top Industries, 1993-2016. https://www.opensecrets.org/lobby/top.php?indexType=i
  3. “Big Pharma,” Drug Watch, accessed April 2016. https://www.drugwatch.com/manufacturer/
  4. 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
  5. Light, D.W. (2013). Risky Drugs: Why the FDA Cannot be Trusted. Harvard University Center for Ethics blog. http://ethics.harvard.edu/blog/risky-drugs-why-fda-cannot-be-trusted
  6. Angell, M. (2004). The Truth About the Drug Companies. The New York Review of Books. http://www.nybooks.com/articles/2004/07/15/the-truth-about-the-drug-companies/
  7. Spector, R. (2005). Me-too drugs: Sometimes they’re just the same old, same old. Stanford Medicine Magazine. http://sm.stanford.edu/archive/stanmed/2005summer/drugs-metoo.html
  8. Rockoff, J. and Silverman, E. (2015). Pharmaceutical Companies Buy Rivals’ Drugs, Then Jack Up the Prices. Wall Street Journal. http://www.wsj.com/articles/pharmaceutical-companies-buy-rivals-drugs-then-jack-up-the-prices-1430096431
  9. Langreth, R. and Spalding, R. (2016). Shkreli Was Right: Everyone’s Hiking Drug Prices. Bloomberg. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-02-02/shkreli-not-alone-in-drug-price-spikes-as-skin-gel-soars-1-860