Upcoming Webinars Archived Webinars Training Vitals Host A Webinar About Get Updates Contact

Drug Prices: To Cap or Not To Cap?


Drug Pricing

Share this!

October 20, 2015 | by Sarah Massey

Like every product on the market – from groceries to cars – prescription pharmaceuticals are subject to inflation. However, recent price hikes on some new drugs – along with those that were approved by the FDA decades ago – have some asking the question, are these costs justified?

For example, the now-infamous Turing Pharmaceuticals CEO, Martin Shkreli, raised the cost of the company’s antiparasitic – Daraprim – from $13.50 to $750, in the course of one day. While Shkreli has since redacted the price hike after public outrage, he initially defended the decision by saying, “This isn’t the greedy drug company trying to gouge patients; it is us trying to stay in business.”

Dramatically increasing the cost of a drug is nothing new in the pharmaceutical industry. Earlier last month, the cost of the tuberculosis treatment, cycloserine, was increased to $10,800 from $500, for a one-month supply. These examples represent a growing trend of seemingly-arbitrary price increases on old, off-patent drugs.

Steve Morgan, professor of health policy at the University of British Columbia’s School of Population and Public Health, told The Globe and Mail, “We’ve seen drug prices go to levels we’ve never conceived of – and the problem isn’t confined to older generic drugs. Many new patented brand-name medications are being introduced at prices so high they threaten the sustainability of the health-care system.”

Unlike other countries – such as those in the European Union – the US does not regulate drug prices. This means that the high cost of a drug in US would be many times cheaper in almost any other country. In the case of Daraprim, while it was selling at $13.50 per dose in the US, the same medication cost anywhere from 5 to 10 cents in India.

In an effort to curb the pharmaceutical industry’s ability to charge any amount for a drug, presidential candidate Hilary Clinton proposed instituting price caps for pharmaceutical developers. Her plan in to establish an out-of-pocket expense ceiling at $250 per month.

“It has gotten to the point where people are being asked to pay not just hundreds but thousands of dollars for a single pill,” said Clinton at a forum last month in Iowa. “That is not the way the market is supposed to work. That is bad actors making a fortune off of people’s misfortune.”

So are price caps really the answer? Some industry commentators are certain that putting a limit on how much a company can charge for its treatment will take away incentives for drug makers to develop innovative treatments, ultimately harming the patient more than the cap would protect their wallet.

Read Page 2



Immunolabeling for Neurodegenerative Diseases

Revisiting the Central Dogma of Molecular Biology

Keywords: Drug Pricing, Price Cap, Regulation



Share this with your colleagues!

Russia & Ukraine Cut Import Taxes, Red Tape for Clinical Trial Supplies

October 13, 2015 - Clinical trial professionals are applauding changes in regulations that make it easier and less expensive to conduct global clinical trials in Russia and Ukraine – two countries whose requirements had been provoking frustration and concern.

Transactional Outsourcing and Strategic Partnerships: An Insider’s Perspective

October 1, 2015 - To understand the benefits – and the common challenges – associated with strategic partnerships, I spoke with Richard Fazackerley, Technical Director, Aesica Pharmaceuticals, who will be speaking in more detail about strategic partnerships in a webinar on October 5th.

Insights Into The Emerging Health Monitoring Medical Device Market

September 24, 2015 - To get an insider’s perspective on where the health monitoring medical device industry is heading, and how these devices could improve outcomes for clinical trials, I spoke with Deepak Prakash, Global Director of Marketing, Digital Health, for Vancive Medical Technologies.

Precision Medicine and the Paradigm Shift In The Development of Novel Cancer Therapies

September 17, 2015 - To further understand how the paradigm shift in cancer research, diagnosis and treatment will affect how drugs are developed and clinical trials are conducted in Canada, I spoke to Dr. Sian Bevan, director of research for the Canadian Cancer Society.

Medical Device Innovation: Blurring the Lines Between Medical Necessity and Personal Accessory

September 9, 2015 - As sales of wearable medical monitors rise, and healthy, average consumers increasingly look for high-tech gadgets to monitor their health, device manufacturers are developing technology which can be marketed to both healthy individuals as well as those with specific medical conditions.

Recent Medical Applications of 3-D Printing and the Future of Medical Device Manufacture

September 2, 2015 - While the use of 3-D printers in the pharmaceutical industry is still in its infancy, three-dimensional printing technology has been used for other applications such as medical device manufacture and improvements in research tools available for drug testing.

Printing Your Prescription: How 3-D Printing Technology is Affecting the Pharmaceutical Industry

August 26, 2015 - In the wake of the FDA’s first approved 3-D printed drug – which happened earlier this year – and the promise of three others in the works, experts are predicting that the future of the pharmaceutical industry lies in the development of printable drug products.

Are There Adequate Alternatives to Animal Testing?

August 19, 2015 - Three promising in vitro and in silico technologies including, Modular Immune in vitro Construct (MIMIC), Organ-on-a-Chip and Computer Models of Adverse Drug Reactions, which could reduce the need for animals in research, are reviewed in more detail.


Copyright © 2016-2017 Honeycomb Worldwide Inc.