Hepatitis Forums

Hepatitis C Main Forums => Hepatitis C Awareness and Activism => Topic started by: Coach Mike on March 12, 2016, 03:29:31 pm

Title: Obscene Profiteering
Post by: Coach Mike on March 12, 2016, 03:29:31 pm
So far, Gilead Sciences has made $31 billion since purchasing Pharmasett for $11 billion, which spent $281 million developing sofosbuvir.
What would happen if a pharmaceutical company used the same pricing strategy for a cure for breast cancer?
The people of the U.S. would empty Congress if the government allowed this outrageous profiteering at the expense of women's lives. There would be mass protests rivaling or surpassing those seen during the Vietnam and Civil Rights era. Gilead would become the face of evil and Congress would act or each and every member who did not would be replaced by one that would come Election Day.

It seems we have entered the era of Hedge Fund Healthcare.
What would/could Gilead get for a cure or vaccine for malaria? Ebola? The "target" market is vast, but, on average, very poor.
It seems we have reached a moral "fork in the road": profit-driven healthcare vs health-driven healthcare.

I wonder if U turns are allowed?

The U.S. government appears to have adopted a "don't look, don't see" policy regarding the importation of generics. I am not aware of a single instance in which someone had their medications detained and destroyed. So, affordable treatment is available to anyone that can come up with $860.00. The sad fact is that many people don't know this or are conditioned to avoid buying medicine from abroad on the Internet for any reason.
Ignorance and paranoia can be cured with knowledge and understanding
Once the TPP is ratified, the generic option will probably be gone.....

Coach Mike
Title: Re: Obscene Profiteering
Post by: Else on March 14, 2016, 12:03:31 pm
Interesting post, Mike.  It's been my experience that we've passed that fork in the road and are firmly on the profit-driven healthcare road.

Gilead has set a precedent in unapologetic avarice.  Other cures (breast cancer included) are not immune.  Why would Gilead change their pricing strategy?  They got away with it, so they'll do it again.  And other pharmaceutical companies will follow suit because they can.

It amazing what people can get use to.  Strange days on planet earth.  :(
Title: Re: Obscene Profiteering
Post by: FutureThinker on March 16, 2016, 03:26:59 pm
Well, we'll know soon enough how Gilead's listening skills are in late June with the FDA decision on their latest HCV drug........ FT
Title: Re: Obscene Profiteering
Post by: Coach Mike on March 16, 2016, 04:27:36 pm
Good point FT,
Gilead has set the bar very high.  They can offer a 50% discount and still make a killing or be doing a lot of killing....
We will see.
Title: Re: Obscene Profiteering
Post by: Coach Mike on April 14, 2016, 11:38:13 am
Gilead is a hedge fund under the guise of a pharmaceutical company. They want drugs that will treat diseases that are problems in wealthy, industrialized nations. Don't look for them to come up with a cure for malaria, ebola or Zika-there is just not enough money in it for them to be interested.
They will continue to tend the geese that lay the golden eggs until, like Australia, they are forced to "make the deal". Then they will cook and eat them.
In the U.S., insurers are relaxing restrictions because of legal pressure brought about by patients over denial of treatment. This will force substantial rises in the cost of health insurance for everyone, with Gilead getting the money. Health insurance companies don't go broke. They have reserve funds, and when they have to tap into them one year, they raise the premiums the next to cover the shortfall.
Widespread acceptance of affordable generics is the only way Greediad will have its hand forced. Dr. Freeman's EASL presentation on the stellar findings of the REDEMPTION clinical trials tomorrow could be a major first step.
We are in a high stakes poker game here. The insurance companies are the "house". Gilead, the well-funded, card-counting professional gambler.
We are the chips.
Title: Re: Obscene Profiteering
Post by: beto on April 14, 2016, 01:14:25 pm
Extreme profiteering on the the backs of the embattled American middle class.  What Gilead is doing is just an 'over the top' example of what most of the Pharma giants are doing.  The fact that we all have the knowledge that a drug is being sold outside the US for prices varying between 90 k and 900.00 dollars and everything in between; yet we just accept it.  The American middle class is the great cash cow of the new world economy...and it is killing us.  We fight our insurance companies to get a life saving drug, at a huge indirect cost to insureds. 

I gladly reached my hand out for the cure.  Anyone who has had a disease for decades that they expected to die from are going to do whatever in takes to get cured.  They know this.  Because of the stigma attached to HCV, we all went quietly.   We stood in line and hands, heart and minds open and ready.  I would do it again.  The caveat for cure has been a feeling like I am a little bit dirty now.  Then there are those that have given up on a cure...

Coach, had I more info back when I started I might have gone for the generics after the 3rd insurance refusal.  The real issue goes beyond profiteering...the pharma bigs are just doing what they do.  The problem is we live an a country (and a world) that is; of the lobby, by the lobby and for the lobby. 

Title: Re: Obscene Profiteering
Post by: Coach Mike on April 14, 2016, 01:19:57 pm
It is very sad. I understand the need for research to be rewarded with monetary rewards. How much is too much? Gilead paid $11 billion for Pharmassett to get the rights to Sovaldi. It has made over $34 billion dollars on that investment.
That should be enough.
Title: Re: Obscene Profiteering
Post by: beto on April 14, 2016, 01:50:36 pm
Would be great if they stood up and did something real nice and divulged a plan to cure all in tandem with GOV and private monies.  At what point do you stop? CEO's are paid the big bucks to do whatever it takes to expand company interests.  They got themselves into drivers seat with timing and brilliant maneuvers that were not popular...but truly the critics were partially quieted with the amaising successes of the product and beyond that, we all forget pretty quickly.  Nobody is going to give Gilead a hand slap...nobody dares.  A CEO that would give up profound profits for a 'good cause' would likely get fired.  I really do not like being cynical.  However, it is impossible not to be these days.  We are given so much ammunition for disappointment in our leaders, institutions and corporations.  Is it so hard to do the right thing?  I digress...I better shut up  :)
Title: Re: Obscene Profiteering
Post by: Coach Mike on April 14, 2016, 02:00:30 pm
Public education is vital to America. An educated electorate is a primary requirement of successful democracy. Since it is so important, the government manages it.
Our highway systems are vital for commerce and national security. Turning a 4 lane interstate into an 8 lane (including the shoulders), one way super highway is a great way to move an entire military division or evacuees from a hurricane very efficiently. Those systems are built and maintained by the government.
Is the health of the population not so important?