Does the 5,000 percent price increase of a generic drug a symptom of American Big Pharma greed?
By: Ringo Bones
Along with Big Coal and Big Oil Capitol Hill lobbyists, Big Pharma is now one of the new symbols of corporate greed that causes unnecessary misery of working class Americans and even people of the rest of the world. And when the drug company Turing Pharmaceuticals recently acquired the license to manufacture a 62-year old lifesaving drug that has since become a generic drug called Daraprim and overnight raised its price by 5,000 percent from 13.50 US dollars per tablet to about 750 US dollars per tablet, millions of people prescribed by the drug are soon up in arms. Even though Turing Pharmaceuticals CEO Martin Shkreli has since roll-backed the 5,000 percent price increase, many now wonder if Big Pharma exploitation of working class patients are causing yet another undue suffering. But is Turing Pharmaceuticals 5,000 percent price rise of a lifesaving generic drug even justified?
Despite Turing Pharmaceuticals CEO Martin Shkrreli saying that his decision for the 5,000 percent price increase of Daraprim is motivated by altruism, anyone with a rudimentary working knowledge of economics compare the move as akin to a luxury sport-scar manufacturer purchasing the rights to manufacture a South Korean family sedan that used to sell for 6,000 US dollars each and then increasing its price to 70,000 US dollars overnight. All of which only highlights the problem of how corporate greed in America and their super-strong lobbying powers at Capitol Hill is causing undue suffering of Americans and everyone else on the planet.
Daraprim entered the pharmaceutical market about 62 years ago as a treatment of the parasitic infection toxoplasmosis and has since been priced as a generic drug. Given their compromised immune system, the main users of Daraprim are HIV / AIDS patients who are easily infected by toxoplasmosis and related infections in comparison to people with normal immune systems.