Exploring Human Potential

How Did We Come To This – Predatory Pricing of Remdesivir?

Posted on | July 2, 2020 | 2 Comments

Mike Magee

In the middle of a deadly pandemic, marked by failed Presidential leadership and a collapsing hospital care network, an effective treatment is priced out of reach to those who need it the most.

Those interested in the complete history can read CODE BLUE: Inside the Medical Industrial Complex. The more condensced answer appeared recently in The Health Care Blog under the title, “The Medical-Industrial Complex Pads Its Pockets As We Empty Our’s.”

If you want to see predatory capitalism at work today, you could do no better than observe the recent actions of Gilead Sciences as they manipulate the price and access to their covid-19 therapy, remdesivir.

No matter that this “Made in America” pharma company’s product is heading rapidly to an off-patent cliff. Investigative reporters reveal that the Foster City, California company has signed confidential licensing deals with nine pharmaceutical manufacturers, including seven suppliers in India.

What’s the deal? Gilead has agreed to abandon generic blocking moves on the companies to slow the emergence of relatively low cost generic versions of remdesivir in return for highly selective distribution.

About 50% of the world’s patients would be excluded. Where do these worldwide citizens live. In the richest nation’s in the developed world including U.S., Brazil, Russia, Britain.  Why these? As one legal expert commented, “Gilead excluded these countries because they have commercial potential and because Gilead wants to reserve the right to prevent competition and charge higher prices.”

Currently, the U.S. pays a premium for the aging drug. Hospitals on average pay the company $3,120 a patient for a five-day treatment. It’s made for a few dollars per treatment. The generic companies plan to sell the therapy for about $350 for five vials to poor countries where distribution (according to the secret pact) will be allowed.

The U.S. government has reserved a half million doses from Gilead at the inflated price. As our government goes mute in support of home-grown predation, Doctors Without Borders voice is loud and clear. Their statement: “If remdesivir is found to be effective and is approved, Gilead should not be allowed to enforce its patents nor claim any other types of exclusivities over remdesivir. No company should profiteer off this pandemic.”


2 Responses to “How Did We Come To This – Predatory Pricing of Remdesivir?”

  1. Lawrence R Williams
    July 2nd, 2020 @ 12:48 pm

    This is pure unfettered Capitalism at work. Capitalism does not have a conscience and does not care about the health and welfare of people except to the extent that such concern will increase the demand for the product. The only measure of good or bad in pure Capitalism is profit or loss. And here is the lesson for those Republicans and so called Conservatives who demand that governmental regulations be removed and let the “free market” operate and everything will work out. Things will work out under that system but what that means is that if you have the money for the product you are fine. If you do not have the money, sorry but you must go without the product and if it is a life saving treatment you must die.

  2. How Did We Come To This – Predatory Pricing of Remdesivir? – Health Article – Health & Wellness Blog
    July 4th, 2020 @ 2:51 pm

    […] This is only a snippet of a Health Article written by Mike Magee Read Full Article […]

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