Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Not just Insurers: Drug Price Hikes will kill you and U.S. health care system too.

While we're watching the insurance base health care system crumble, the countries pharmaceutical industry might just strike the final blow, pricing almost everyone out.

Insurance Ripoff: The Democrats and Obama administration still aren't making the above argument against insurance and big pharma. The fact that insurers can't make high enough profits and meet investor expectations on the exchanges isn't ObamaCare's fault, it's the private insurance industry model. Reminder; insurers aren't doctors or hospitals; and they don't provide consumers with extra freedoms when they're locked into their own provider networks.

Drug Company Ripoff: Here's the jaw dropping latest from an industry that mimics some of the ravaging diseases it treats.

A new study just found that:
Derma-Smoothe oil is a topical treatment for eczema that cost $46 in 2009. This year, its $323. Retin-A Micro, an acne skin treatment, cost $178 in 2009. This year, it’s $915.

Cara cream, which is used to treat wartlike, precancerous growths as well superficial, basal-cell skin cancer … jumped from $159 in 2009 to $2,865 this year.

Valeant Pharmaceuticals, a Canadian-based company that is known for buying the rights to drugs and raising their prices, (is raising its) acne drug, Retin-A Micro 413% … Targretin gel, used to treat a type of cancer in the skin known as cutaneous T-cell lymphoma was the most expensive drug on the list, rising in price from $1,687 in 2009 to $30,320 this year.

"This is really a phenomenon that is pervasive throughout the entire pharmaceutical industry," said lead author Miranda Rosenberg. "It has the potential to bankrupt our system."
The study comes at the same time this just broke:

Martin Shkreli, the face of pharmaceutical greed!!!
Turing Pharmaceuticals AG will not will not change its decision to raise the price of a decades-old drug, Daraprim, by more than 5,000 percent, backing out of previous statements that it would cut the cost by the end of the year … which jumped from $13.50 a pill to $750 a pill earlier this year. 
Getting back to the new study.... 
The research comes amid growing concern and government inquiries about dramatic increases in prescription drug prices in general. Michael Carome, a physician and director of the Health Research Group of the watchdog organization, Public Citizen said the price increases are not due to inflation or higher priced ingredients. "It's because companies can jack up their prices and patients are held hostage," he said. Public Citizen issued a report on what it said were needlessly high Medicare Part D brand name drug prices. It blamed the prices on congressional restrictions on the government's ability to negotiate with the pharmaceutical industry.
Remember, government cannot use its citizen backed bulk buying power to lower prices, like other countries do. It's the purist form of ideological conservatism, and really bad economics.  
(According to the study), many of the drugs on the list with the biggest price increases have been on the market for 10 years or more.
Prescription drugs just cost more in the U.S. than in other countries where they can be purchased for a fraction of the price.
Drug-makers can get extensions on their patents, allowing them to keep out generic competitors.
Medicare cannot legally negotiate lower drug prices, unlike governments in other countries.
Mergers in the pharmaceutical industry have allowed some companies to corner the market on products.

1 comment: