Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Monday, March 05, 2018

The burden of high drug costs weighs most heavily on the sickest Americans. Drug makers have raised prices on treatments for life-threatening or chronic conditions like multiple sclerosis, diabetes and cancer. In turn, insurers have shifted more of those costs onto consumers. Saddled with high deductibles and other out-of-pocket costs that expose them to a drug's rising list price, many people are paying thousands of dollars a month merely to survive. For more than a year, President Donald Trump and Democrats in Congress have promised to take action on high drug prices, but despite a flurry of proposals, little has changed.

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FAKE NEWS...why not include all the positives about the drug industry. first, capitalism at its finest, on display. Profit, that pretty much says it all. freedom, in america we all have the right to purchase in the free market the health care that we want. the drug industry pays millions of dollars each year in an effort to inform our elected officials about the intricacies of health care to enable them to pass laws in an informed manner. laws which greatly benefit us all. look around, where would we be as a nation without the drug industry?

#1 | Posted by ABlock at 2018-03-05 12:31 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

#1

Don't forget that the Drug Industry creates tens of thousands of new jobs...for bankruptcy attorneys and bankruptcy courts and debt collectors!

#2 | Posted by Sycophant at 2018-03-05 01:05 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

And don't forget too, that when the prices rise too high jobs for morticians are created!

#3 | Posted by danni at 2018-03-05 01:09 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

#2 & #3...shout it out brothers and sisters, USA..USA..USA. we are truly blessed. can i get an amen?

#4 | Posted by ABlock at 2018-03-05 01:16 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

Republicans Do Not Care. Get that through your heads. Every dog for himself in their world.

#5 | Posted by moder8 at 2018-03-05 01:20 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

Trumpcare is the only thing that can solve it.

Believe me.

#6 | Posted by fresno500 at 2018-03-05 01:23 PM | Reply

So what's the solution? No profit? See how much investment that gets you in the pharmaceutical industry to create the next cancer drug, blue pill, or PMS happy pill. What we need is more American kids going into the sciences instead of trying to become the next 3rd rate reality star.

#7 | Posted by bogey1355 at 2018-03-05 01:28 PM | Reply | Funny: 2 | Newsworthy 2

Drug companies will maximize profits to serve their shareholders.
Government is supposed to regulate this capitalism to ensure its residents are protected from faulty drugs.
The FDA does this with a licensing process that keeps drugs safe. However, by restricting competition, it leaves the market open to price gouging.

Most OEDC countries have safe drugs priced fairly because their governments regulate quality and negotiate pricing.
Bush's Plan D and other drug company friendly legislation has abdicated US Gov's role in controlling price along with quality.

This could be fixed by opening up the US drug market and letting capitalism do its thing.
Or by having single payer for drugs and let socialism do its thing.
Both would lower prices, the first with more choice and risk.

Right now the US is the victim of corporate cronyism to the benefit of Drug companies and the doctors and politicians they pay off to keep milking US residents.

#8 | Posted by bored at 2018-03-05 01:30 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

As I've gone through my mom's bank accounts after her death in January....I was able to see better what she was spending on her drugs.

premiums for the drug plan, the CC Statements that included payments to Walgreens and the checks she wrote.

Now, this was for someone 85 years old on Medicare. Not someone who isn't insured. But the amount is quite a bit.

This issue of drugs has been avoided long enough....let's stop pretending we don't have a massive price problem here in the US.

Let's deal with it.

#9 | Posted by eberly at 2018-03-05 01:40 PM | Reply

So where is the investment capital supposed to come from? Pharmaceuticals are lot like investing in a sophisticated lottery. Most of the money is spent on non-revenue generating research, payoffs to the FDA, legal fees, promotion, lobbying, etc. Add to that that so much of it is controlled by the ivory towers on college campuses who's aim is to keep the money (research grants) flowing. They don't get paid anymore when they find the magic pill.

#10 | Posted by bogey1355 at 2018-03-05 01:50 PM | Reply

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"Pharmaceutical industry gets high on fat profits

Imagine an industry that generates higher profit margins than any other and is no stranger to multi-billion dollar fines for malpractice.

Throw in widespread accusations of collusion and over-charging, and banking no doubt springs to mind.

In fact, the industry described above is responsible for the development of medicines to save lives and alleviate suffering, not the generation of profit for its own sake.

Pharmaceutical companies have developed the vast majority of medicines known to humankind, but they have profited handsomely from doing so, and not always by legitimate means.

Last year, US giant Pfizer, the world's largest drug company by pharmaceutical revenue, made an eye-watering 42% profit margin. As one industry veteran understandably says: "I wouldn't be able to justify [those kinds of margins]."

Stripping out the one-off $10bn (£6.2bn) the company made from spinning off its animal health business leaves a margin of 24%, still pretty spectacular by any standard.

In the UK, for example, there was widespread anger when the industry regulator predicted energy companies' profit margins would grow from 4% to 8% this year.

Last year, five pharmaceutical companies made a profit margin of 20% or more - Pfizer, Hoffmann-La Roche, AbbVie, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Eli Lilly."

more

www.bbc.com

#11 | Posted by Corky at 2018-03-05 01:56 PM | Reply

'what she was spending on her drugs"

Should be:
What taxpayers were spending on her drugs.
If it was her money, she could have negotiated a better price.
But that's illegal for Uncle Sam.
Thanks, GOP!

P.S. Deal with it.

#12 | Posted by snoofy at 2018-03-05 02:00 PM | Reply

That's a great article. I question where we are headed as a society if only the wealthy or upper middle class can afford the drugs they need. It laid out the plight of millions of American's pretty simply.

Even today on a good plan ($80 copay on name brand drugs/ $10 generic), a guy I work with has to constantly fight with insurance for the blood pressure med he needs. They insist he try cheaper ones that it's already been established he is allergic to. I understand trying generic and low cost medications but it's this stupid game insurance companies play - they don't want to cover you and unless you comply they won't. It costs them less to fight with you and insist on cheaper alternatives than to cover the med that works. That was illustrated in the article segment "Two Battlefields: The Illness and the Bills."

I am also incredibly tired of reading about the price of these medications soaring. I watched Insulin soar just before the ACA kicked in - from $15 a vial to well over $350 a vial over a few months in a price gouging profit taking effort. We need some of what Canada has going on with their boards.

#13 | Posted by GalaxiePete at 2018-03-05 02:33 PM | Reply

"I question where we are headed as a society if only the wealthy or upper middle class can afford the drugs they need."

If they didn't pay more income taxes than Snoofy they don't deserve anything.

Signed,
Eberly

:)

#14 | Posted by snoofy at 2018-03-05 02:38 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

So what's the solution? No profit? See how much investment that gets you in the pharmaceutical industry to create the next cancer drug, blue pill, or PMS happy pill. What we need is more American kids going into the sciences instead of trying to become the next 3rd rate reality star.

#7 | Posted by bogey1355

Uh did you read the article? Do you have any clue how many companies have suddenly jacked the prices on their products from a few dollars to hundreds for no good reason other than profit taking?

The insulin example? Why did the company do it? They were literally selling it for $15/vial for YEARS. What made them over a year jack the price up 2400%? I know for sure the patent was expiring and a generic was in trials. They were fighting the generic's release and trying to lock down their profits for an extended period - because at $15 a vial there was still a lot of room to be undercut by a generic. They then tweak the product and get new protections on that one. There are several reasons why there are not a lot of generic insulins out there. Walmart has the only one I am aware of and it is an older one that offers fewer protections of the newer cocktails.

#15 | Posted by GalaxiePete at 2018-03-05 02:39 PM | Reply

So where is the investment capital supposed to come from? Pharmaceuticals are lot like investing in a sophisticated lottery. Most of the money is spent on non-revenue generating research, payoffs to the FDA, legal fees, promotion, lobbying, etc. Add to that that so much of it is controlled by the ivory towers on college campuses who's aim is to keep the money (research grants) flowing. They don't get paid anymore when they find the magic pill.

#10 | POSTED BY BOGEY1355 AT 2018-03-05 01:50 PM

So tell us how these very same companies can sell the very same drugs for orders of magnitude less in Mexico and Canada. Do they voluntarily take enormous losses in those countries or are they gouging us?

Which is it?

#16 | Posted by hatter5183 at 2018-03-05 03:00 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

I think Rcade should add three new flag options for comment submitters. Serious, Dickish, Funnyish. That way people can set filters and ignore my lame attempts at humor or digs at wing dings and just see posts that I hope are informative. I can't stop attempting to be a dick or funny, but I think Rcade should allow readers to selectively 'plonk' classes of messages.

Snoffy may need a special flag for 'maybe funny but also dickish'.
;)

#17 | Posted by bored at 2018-03-05 03:05 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

#16 They don't lose money anywhere, they will argue that the US consumers pay for R&D, but they are mostly just gouging an easy mark.

#18 | Posted by bored at 2018-03-05 03:07 PM | Reply

So where is the investment capital supposed to come from? Pharmaceuticals are lot like investing in a sophisticated lottery. Most of the money is spent on non-revenue generating research, payoffs to the FDA, legal fees, promotion, lobbying, etc. Add to that that so much of it is controlled by the ivory towers on college campuses who's aim is to keep the money (research grants) flowing. They don't get paid anymore when they find the magic pill.

#10 | POSTED BY BOGEY1355 AT 2018-03-05 01:50 PM | REPLY |

The same place it always has. The basic research is always done at taxpayer expense at the universities. It is only when a drug gets to the point where it is showing promise as a money maker that the pharmaceuticals swoop in and buy the patents.

The push for profit has led to universities spending their limited research funds on medications that are likely to be big profit makers for the pharmaceuticals rather than focusing on need. That is why there are new penis pills that can be niche marketed for $100s per pill but almost no movement in new antibiotics which have to compete with inexpensive existing drugs

#19 | Posted by hatter5183 at 2018-03-05 03:10 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

As government funding of research falls, The remaining research is dominated by the search for quick profit rather than tedious long view research which may save more lives over time but wont produce quick ROI. Foundational research which isn't immediately applicable but yields insights that allow later discoveries gets shoved by the wayside because the researcher cannot show an immediate gain from it.

People don't understand that some modern research methods and discoveries are made when a scientist combines 2 lines of research done years ago and creates something new. Without the basic research done years ago the new discovery would never happen.

It's the base of the pryamid stuff where none of the marble ends up that everything else is built upon

#20 | Posted by hatter5183 at 2018-03-05 05:26 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

"If they didn't pay more income taxes than Snoofy they don't deserve anything."

Not really, no.

#21 | Posted by eberly at 2018-03-05 11:12 PM | Reply

It's the base of the pryamid stuff where none of the marble ends up that everything else is built upon

#20 | POSTED BY HATTER5183

This is something that real Conservatives should understand. But our "conservative" friends don't.

#22 | Posted by WhoDaMan at 2018-03-06 12:07 AM | Reply

Single payer is worth fighting for. It's going to take a walk-out/sit-in to get it.

#23 | Posted by SheepleSchism at 2018-03-06 01:22 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

#7 only somebody completely ignorant of the current state of American science would make that comment.

#24 | Posted by jpw at 2018-03-06 03:49 AM | Reply

A new flag could be "finally." Hatteras deserved one for #19. I was thinking it but just didn't want to have to be the one to burst the bubbles of the likes of BOGEY and, thankfully, Hatteras did it for me. But don't worry folks, in another thread about pharmaceuticals, BOGEY will post the same thing again and again and again. Paid poster? Sure does seem to love him some pharmaceutical companies....

#25 | Posted by danni at 2018-03-06 06:18 AM | Reply

This is an example of "crony capitalism". Welfare for the wealthiest, and do not blame the damn Yankee, this has been going on for decades. I have an old uncle, pharmacist by trade, got a couple of degrees in chemistry. He was adamantly offended by big phama. Pointing out in chemical terms I had no ideal what he was referring to, but the jest was if a patent ran out, and a drug could be marketed by competitors, the original manufacture would change the drug minutely, one atom, then re-market it as a new drug. The "new drug" would be marketed by an army of salesmen who provided inducement (kick backs) to the doctors who prescribe them. There are anti-trust laws, I wonder why they are not being enforced? I guess the people who wrote the laws, congressmen, are a little influenced by the contributions made by lobbyist who look out for the interest of their employers.

#26 | Posted by docnjo at 2018-03-06 11:55 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

...and a primary contributor to medicare and medicaid budget problems. Monopoly Capitalism is a form of class warfare.

#27 | Posted by bayviking at 2018-03-06 01:06 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

The only way forward is a complete gov't takeover of the healthcare system.
And then refuse to do business with profiteering companies.

Big Pharma has poisoned this country with cheap and plentiful opioids, Xanax, ADHD and zombie drugs for the mentally ill.

Then jacked the prices on life-saving meds, for no other reason than they can.

They're a criminal enterprise running under bought and paid for Congresscritter protection.

Liberals need to lead the way to healthcare for all.

#28 | Posted by SheepleSchism at 2018-03-06 01:33 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

Classic liberals are not what we see among the left is populated by now. I can not think of a single historic liberal that would support speech codes or busting up an event because some individual they disagree with is speaking. So ashamed of what they were doing they have to wear masks,(BTW do not wear a mask publicly in Texas, it is against the law, has been for over a century). Y'all want single payer? Let's do it. Now put the amount we individually are paying to keep this program going is put as a separate tax, such as under medicare. Then let's see how long it last. Compassion costs.

#29 | Posted by docnjo at 2018-03-06 02:06 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

"Liberals need to lead the way to healthcare for all."

That will only make conservatives oppose it more

Conservatives need to lead too. The economic argument is plain as day, but conservatives don't actually care about economics, just about getting rich. Which is a thing out health care "system" is goid at, making a lot of people poor to make a few people rich.

#30 | Posted by snoofy at 2018-03-06 02:09 PM | Reply

"I can not think of a single historic liberal that would support speech codes or busting up an event because some individual they disagree with is speaking."

How about a modern day conservative? They support both of those things.

So, what's your point, liberals suck as bad as you, they just haven't realized it yet?

#31 | Posted by snoofy at 2018-03-06 02:14 PM | Reply

#31 | Posted by snoofy, False equivalency, Every conservative or libertarian speaker who visits a campus now has to hire extensive security, leftist and liberals do not. Robert Russ has a teem of two, one being his driver and the other his assistant. Milo has at least 8 security personnel, mostly ex-military. So does Ben Shapiro. Sort of reminds me of the Academy Awards this week, lots of celebrities hating guns publicly, all wile having over 200 armed men protecting their building, not counting their body guards.

#32 | Posted by docnjo at 2018-03-06 02:27 PM | Reply

"False equivalency,"

It sure is! Your lot blow up federal buildings and drive cars into crowds!

#33 | Posted by DirkStruan at 2018-03-06 02:51 PM | Reply

Conservatives need to lead too.
#30 | POSTED BY SNOOFY

They won't, because neocon doctrine and all that fun lobbyist cash.
Single-payer will require a nationwide work stoppage.
The only thing con-conservatives understand; when their factory production lines shut down.
We can get it, but it'll take 60-90 days of no pay. Americans aren't sick enough of the system yet to do it.

BTW - this is the same path to a nationwide assault rifle ban. again, we don't have the willpower yet.
But when we do, we'll get that too.

Honestly, the first strike will be the hardest. Once we show DC that we can stomach it? They'll have no choice but to represent the people. As it stands, they represent the special interest with the most money.

#34 | Posted by SheepleSchism at 2018-03-06 02:55 PM | Reply

Maybe I would support a handgun ban, except for women, and a derringer would do. The only use for large capacity hand gun is combat, it isn't needed on the street, yet. Hell, most murders that are committed with firearms are committed with hand guns, something like 90%+, even a majority of mass shootings in schools. Long guns are hard to hide. Make a law that says no firearm can be less than 36" long and no male adult less than 30 years of age can carry a hand gun in public. Cops always go for their shotguns and rifle if a gun fight breaks out, they are simply more effective. I would rather see a cop with a shotgun with 3 point sling, it is more intimidating than a 9mm Glock. 16 "00" 32 caliber balls can be very persuasive. Plus shot gun projectiles generally do not go through walls, bullets do. Criminals do not carry firearms in public. I see firearms in public, carried by civilians every week. We do not have much street crime here, never have. Knowing that one individual in 10 has a CCP dissuades most. Hell the guy that sells me fish for my aquarium packs heat. He weighs about 130 lbs and is about 70 years old. My barber has a pistol in her drawer. My girl friend has a nine and carries it. I prefer good people carrying firearms. Gives bad people second thoughts.

#35 | Posted by docnjo at 2018-03-06 03:28 PM | Reply

"The basic research is always done at taxpayer expense at the universities. "

Try again. University research is conducted with Private and Federal Grants. The Universities take a generous "administrative fee" and then the grant managers manage the research program. Of course it is important to note that everyone involved, from the Chancellor to the lab assistant, is motivated to stretch out the process as long as possible because once they are successful, there is no more funding and they are unemployed. Go to U. Texas or Cal State and ask how many millions in funding they get from grants to do the research. Ask them if those grants are lost, how many jobs are lost. Or ask them if there is no grant, if they will see the research as important enough to continue? Hell, many University "faculty" are hired specifically because they found a way to get a grant.

That said, I think that the best place for the research to be done IS the University system. But I think the process is flawed in that it is inefficient and prone to corruption. In my experience, there is no priority placed on solutions. The priority is placed on keeping the money flowing. Personally, I think the research ought to be under the prevue of the agency that will ultimately approve the drug (the FDA). And competition from the private sector should not be prohibited. If anything, the competition might for the Universities to start acting in a more responsible manner.

#36 | Posted by bogey1355 at 2018-03-07 12:19 PM | Reply

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