[lit-ideas] Re: vicious budget cuts

  • From: "Veronica Caley" <vcaley@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Mon, 30 Jan 2006 20:36:14 -0500

Actually, a lot of the research for new drugs is based on studies into
basic research and other types in universities.  Much of this is paid for
by tax money and funds provided by foundations and grants.  I know this
because I read about the basic research in "Science News."  I know where
some of this was done and the names of the researchers is given.

The big expense with the drugs is in testing.  I am willing to pay for
these drugs for poor people.  I object to paying significantly more than
Europeans and Canadians, many of whom are not poor.  The US is no longer
number one or two in the standard of living.  And the number of poor people
in this country is multiplying at an appalling rate.  And if you read
Julie's post re the health issues in her family, you know that sometimes
families can't get insurance because they are sick.
Kafka lives.

My dental hygienist told me the story of one of her other patients, a
person who worked for one of the pharmaceutical companies.  She quit
because she couldn't stomach charging people $300 for a month's supply of a
drug that cost $3.00 to make.I think the government ought to prohibit
advertising of prescription drugs.  And the relationship between doctors
and pharmaceutical company reps is very suspect.

Veronica Caley
Milford, MI

> [Original Message]
> From: Phil Enns <phil.enns@xxxxxxxxxxx>
> To: <lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
> Date: 1/30/2006 8:03:32 PM
> Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: vicious budget cuts
> Eric Yost wrote:
> "Yet Americans, for example, aren't subsidizing the cost of the
> Brazilian drugs. Rather they are paying to increase the pharmas' stock
> prices and (supposedly) helping to fund R&D for new drugs.  The drugs
> the Brazilian government licenses are purchased above the cost of
> manufacture."
> As I understand it, the licenses allow the Brazilian government to
> produce the drugs at a significant discount.  In this sense, the payment
> is above the cost of manufacturing the drugs.  However, the cost for the
> drug companies lies in R&D.  Furthermore, the cost is not merely for the
> individual drugs but also for all the drugs that were developed but
> found to be unsuitable.  That is, drug companies have to subsidize their
> failures through the profits from successful drugs.  When governments
> like that of Brazil set the cost they are willing to pay, they do not
> allow for all the costs that drug companies incur.  In order to make up
> for these losses, they raise prices elsewhere.  We experienced this in
> Africa where second-generation drugs were available at a greatly
> subsidized price because prices in Europe and N. America were much
> higher than cost.  And personally, I am willing to pay more so that
> Africans can have access to the same drugs rather than having to do with
> third or fourth-generation drugs.
> An interesting article I found is at:
> http://tinyurl.com/dbyld
> The concluding paragraph:
> "Again, the multinational pharmaceutical manufacturers are not
> innocents ? not good and deserving companies devoted to social
> advancement. Corporations, by their very nature, have no souls. The
> worst corporations are vampires, the best no better than robots. Many
> industries provide products and services that are essential to modern
> life in an interdependent society and none have a clear record of
> putting public responsibility before profits. But, generally, societies
> have managed to work with the industries through systems that assure
> reliable services alongside fair profits. Only the pharmaceutical
> industry has been placed in the position of direct confrontation through
> regulation, price controls, and diversion of established markets ? and
> then been castigated for fighting back."
> Sincerely,
> Phil Enns
> Toronto, ON
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