Drug profits - a necessary evil or something that needs to change

3rd July 2020

This is a really complex issue. How should we fund the research for more effective drugs to treat conditions that may affect millions, knowing that many will not work and then determine how to price those that do work to cover the costs not just of the drug that did work, but the research for those that did not.

The expense to deliver the medication has components that incorporate the search for the expected up-and-comers, the advancement of the tests on animals and afterward people and the continuous observing to decide its impact.

The system to do this has been to have revenue driven organizations get licenses for their disclosures and afterward get a period between 5, 12 and here and there more than 20 years to be able to exclusively supply the drug and set its cost.

The question is not if it can be better but how will it be more accessible .

This week Gilead Sciences, the maker of Remdesivir, issued a statement about the price they will look to charge should the drug be certified for use to treat Covid-19.

It is good news that a drug has shown some positive signs of being able to treat the virus and allow those infected to recover sooner. Initial trials suggest that it reduces the time recovering in hospital by four days.

It is a very difficult decision to determine who should get treated when new and very expensive treatments are released. Tim Hartford looked at this issue on hos podcast Cautionary Tales

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