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(The Wire)   Great news: there is a new drug on the market that cures 95% of Hepatitis C patients, saving them from liver transplants or liver cancer. Not-so-great news: it costs $1,000 a day and has to be taken for 12 weeks   (thewire.com) divider line 116
    More: Interesting, hepatitis C, liver transplant, Sovaldi, Gilead Sciences, Henry Waxman, forensic biologist, patients, insurance companies  
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3109 clicks; posted to Main » on 02 Apr 2014 at 1:59 PM (28 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-04-02 12:27:22 PM  
Yeah, I recently had a scary false positive Hep C test, and my doctors were planning on putting me on this.  The side effects are also a bit scary.

Good thing, I've had two clean tests since then, so yeah, don't need to do this.
 
2014-04-02 12:41:36 PM  
Gilead Sciences believes the focus is in all the wrong places. "Critics have focused on the per-pill cost or per-bottle cost, but that is really not relevant here. It's how much it costs to cure your patient," said Gregg Alton, Gilead's executive vice president of corporate and medical affairs

In other words, it doesn't matter that it only costs them $1 per pill to manufacture.  They get to price it at the same cost as a liver transplant.

This is perfectly legal, of course, even if it is utterly immoral.  But reeling in $83,000 of profit on every patient sure does assuage one's conscience, if one has one left after this kind of profiteering.
 
2014-04-02 12:49:51 PM  

Marcus Aurelius: Gilead Sciences believes the focus is in all the wrong places. "Critics have focused on the per-pill cost or per-bottle cost, but that is really not relevant here. It's how much it costs to cure your patient," said Gregg Alton, Gilead's executive vice president of corporate and medical affairs

In other words, it doesn't matter that it only costs them $1 per pill to manufacture.  They get to price it at the same cost as a liver transplant.

This is perfectly legal, of course, even if it is utterly immoral.  But reeling in $83,000 of profit on every patient sure does assuage one's conscience, if one has one left after this kind of profiteering.


My lawyer brain wonders why if we can use eminent domain to seize some poor schlub's house to make way for a freeway bypass because that's "for the public good" why we couldn' also do that to the patent on a drug like this.   Let a jury decide what "just compensation and "Fair market value" for the patent is,  Let the fed gov pay them in a lump sum and then turn the damn thing into a generic that costs $2 per pill.

And before you start screaming "socialism"   and "Would destroy the incentive to innovate" please keep in mind that the US defense Department has been doing this for YEARS, essentially seizing patents they want (or just ignoring them) in the name of "national security"
 
2014-04-02 12:49:59 PM  

Marcus Aurelius: Gilead Sciences believes the focus is in all the wrong places. "Critics have focused on the per-pill cost or per-bottle cost, but that is really not relevant here. It's how much it costs to cure your patient," said Gregg Alton, Gilead's executive vice president of corporate and medical affairs

In other words, it doesn't matter that it only costs them $1 per pill to manufacture.  They get to price it at the same cost as a liver transplant.

This is perfectly legal, of course, even if it is utterly immoral.  But reeling in $83,000 of profit on every patient sure does assuage one's conscience, if one has one left after this kind of profiteering.


If your numbers are correct, you are justified. How much did it cost to develop from chemistry to clinical trials?
 
2014-04-02 12:53:14 PM  

Marcus Aurelius: Gilead Sciences believes the focus is in all the wrong places. "Critics have focused on the per-pill cost or per-bottle cost, but that is really not relevant here. It's how much it costs to cure your patient," said Gregg Alton, Gilead's executive vice president of corporate and medical affairs

In other words, it doesn't matter that it only costs them $1 per pill to manufacture.  They get to price it at the same cost as a liver transplant.

This is perfectly legal, of course, even if it is utterly immoral.  But reeling in $83,000 of profit on every patient sure does assuage one's conscience, if one has one left after this kind of profiteering.


Sorry to burst your corporation hate bubble, but they won't be making a profit for years
 
2014-04-02 12:56:33 PM  

Magorn: My lawyer brain wonders why if we can use eminent domain to seize some poor schlub's house to make way for a freeway bypass because that's "for the public good" why we couldn' also do that to the patent on a drug like this. Let a jury decide what "just compensation and "Fair market value" for the patent is, Let the fed gov pay them in a lump sum and then turn the damn thing into a generic that costs $2 per pill.

And before you start screaming "socialism" and "Would destroy the incentive to innovate" please keep in mind that the US defense Department has been doing this for YEARS, essentially seizing patents they want (or just ignoring them) in the name of "national security"


That would be highly entertaining to watch.  I'd love hear the media tell everyone how unfair it is for a company to not get $83,000 of profit from a drug treatment.

b2theory: How much did it cost to develop from chemistry to clinical trials?


My guess would be the same as most other drugs.  But development cost is unimportant.  There's lots of opportunities for price gouging, with companies buying up "orphan" drugs and quadrupling the price overnight.

It's all about charging the absolute most that the market will bear.  Never mind that these are sick people, they have to pay.  And if they can't pay, then they'll just die.  That's the American way.
 
2014-04-02 12:56:44 PM  

Banned on the Run: Marcus Aurelius: Gilead Sciences believes the focus is in all the wrong places. "Critics have focused on the per-pill cost or per-bottle cost, but that is really not relevant here. It's how much it costs to cure your patient," said Gregg Alton, Gilead's executive vice president of corporate and medical affairs

In other words, it doesn't matter that it only costs them $1 per pill to manufacture.  They get to price it at the same cost as a liver transplant.

This is perfectly legal, of course, even if it is utterly immoral.  But reeling in $83,000 of profit on every patient sure does assuage one's conscience, if one has one left after this kind of profiteering.

Sorry to burst your corporation hate bubble, but they won't be making a profit for years


In the exact same way that the Lord of the Rings and the Titanic "didn't make a profit" despite grossing more than $1 billion worldwide and costing about $200 million to make.  Which is to say only if you buy the patently absurd accounting drug companies use and which costs the ascribe to a particular drug (like charging the entire R&D budget to its most sucessful drug)
 
2014-04-02 12:58:36 PM  
CHEEBURGERCHEEBURGERCHEEBURGER.

NO HEP-C - ONLY COKE!
 
2014-04-02 12:59:07 PM  

Banned on the Run: Sorry to burst your corporation hate bubble, but they won't be making a profit for years


Sure they will.  The profits will just be written down against "development costs", so that they don't show a profit on paper and will therefore not owe any taxes on it.

And how do you figure I hate corporations?  I practically am one.
 
2014-04-02 01:16:47 PM  

Marcus Aurelius: Magorn: My lawyer brain wonders why if we can use eminent domain to seize some poor schlub's house to make way for a freeway bypass because that's "for the public good" why we couldn' also do that to the patent on a drug like this. Let a jury decide what "just compensation and "Fair market value" for the patent is, Let the fed gov pay them in a lump sum and then turn the damn thing into a generic that costs $2 per pill.

And before you start screaming "socialism" and "Would destroy the incentive to innovate" please keep in mind that the US defense Department has been doing this for YEARS, essentially seizing patents they want (or just ignoring them) in the name of "national security"

That would be highly entertaining to watch.  I'd love hear the media tell everyone how unfair it is for a company to not get $83,000 of profit from a drug treatment.

b2theory: How much did it cost to develop from chemistry to clinical trials?

My guess would be the same as most other drugs.  But development cost is unimportant.  There's lots of opportunities for price gouging, with companies buying up "orphan" drugs and quadrupling the price overnight.

It's all about charging the absolute most that the market will bear.  Never mind that these are sick people, they have to pay.  And if they can't pay, then they'll just die.  That's the American way.


True. It sucks when you apply a profit margin to life saving products.
 
2014-04-02 01:28:13 PM  

b2theory: It sucks when you apply a profit margin to life saving products.


That is why most industrialized nations have had the good sense to socialize medicine.
 
2014-04-02 01:52:13 PM  

Magorn: My lawyer brain wonders why if we can use eminent domain to seize some poor schlub's house to make way for a freeway bypass because that's "for the public good" why we couldn' also do that to the patent on a drug like this.


The Paris convention allows compulsory licensing for patents, but leaves it up to the legislature of each country to implement. I know in certain countries, for example, Thailand, the patents for various antiretroviral drugs for HIV were made available under a compulsory licensing so that Thai companies can manufacture HIV medication while paying only a relatively low statutory license. As I recall, the HIV and AIDS epidemic was so bad in Thailand that the government declared that HIV medication are under compulsory licensing as a matter of public health and safety.
 
2014-04-02 01:55:05 PM  

Marcus Aurelius: And how do you figure I hate corporations? I practically am one.


If you think progressive taxation and social services are good  for the economy a real merkin would say you hate corporations.
 
2014-04-02 02:03:38 PM  
I was told there'd be no math.
 
2014-04-02 02:03:49 PM  

SphericalTime: Yeah, I recently had a scary false positive Hep C test, and my doctors were planning on putting me on this.  The side effects are also a bit scary.


Compared to the side effects of peg-interferon, it's a picnic.
 
2014-04-02 02:07:00 PM  
Seriously, who cares what it costs if it'll save your life? That's what health insurance is for.
 
2014-04-02 02:09:07 PM  
Well, thank God for Obamacare.
 
2014-04-02 02:09:13 PM  
Big Pharma creates a drug to save lives and is vastly cheaper and safer than a liver transplant, and they are Evil. Can someone tell me how that works?
 
2014-04-02 02:09:20 PM  

b2theory: Marcus Aurelius: Gilead Sciences believes the focus is in all the wrong places. "Critics have focused on the per-pill cost or per-bottle cost, but that is really not relevant here. It's how much it costs to cure your patient," said Gregg Alton, Gilead's executive vice president of corporate and medical affairs

In other words, it doesn't matter that it only costs them $1 per pill to manufacture.  They get to price it at the same cost as a liver transplant.

This is perfectly legal, of course, even if it is utterly immoral.  But reeling in $83,000 of profit on every patient sure does assuage one's conscience, if one has one left after this kind of profiteering.

If your numbers are correct, you are justified. How much did it cost to develop from chemistry to clinical trials?


How much of the chemistry was based off knowledge gained from research funded by public grants?
 
2014-04-02 02:10:35 PM  
Real News: It probably costs under $1 per dose when made in million-dose batches.  Real farkedup News: The company doesn't make much money when they make million-dose batches.
 
2014-04-02 02:11:31 PM  
The pricing on this is claimed to be $85,000 in order to recoup the $11 Billion purchase price of the distribution rights from the patent from the developing laboratory.

However that only takes ~135,000 treatments to pay that $11 Billion investment.
There are more than 65 Million Hepatitus C suferers in the world, and at this distributor's current pricing for the US market, it would take $4.5 Trillion to cure them all.

I'm sure glad, aspirin, the polio, MMR, and other vaccines/treatments/procedures that we've had for about 60 years, wasn't distributed this way.
Hopefully they'll go to the AIDS/HIV treatment capacity quickly and for $0.40 a day, they can treat and cure Hep C, and take pride in knowing that they have the capacity to make another one of the devastating diseases of the world go the way of Small Pox.
 
2014-04-02 02:13:32 PM  

Magorn: Marcus Aurelius: Gilead Sciences believes the focus is in all the wrong places. "Critics have focused on the per-pill cost or per-bottle cost, but that is really not relevant here. It's how much it costs to cure your patient," said Gregg Alton, Gilead's executive vice president of corporate and medical affairs

In other words, it doesn't matter that it only costs them $1 per pill to manufacture.  They get to price it at the same cost as a liver transplant.

This is perfectly legal, of course, even if it is utterly immoral.  But reeling in $83,000 of profit on every patient sure does assuage one's conscience, if one has one left after this kind of profiteering.

My lawyer brain wonders why if we can use eminent domain to seize some poor schlub's house to make way for a freeway bypass because that's "for the public good" why we couldn' also do that to the patent on a drug like this.   Let a jury decide what "just compensation and "Fair market value" for the patent is,  Let the fed gov pay them in a lump sum and then turn the damn thing into a generic that costs $2 per pill.

And before you start screaming "socialism"   and "Would destroy the incentive to innovate" please keep in mind that the US defense Department has been doing this for YEARS, essentially seizing patents they want (or just ignoring them) in the name of "national security"


Destroy the Republicans big pharma buddies and the entire need for the big govt Democrat entitlement programs for medicine in one fell swoop?

Are you mad sir? The establishment would see to it that you never got past a grassy knoll if you was in charge and tried such a thing.
 
2014-04-02 02:15:06 PM  
It doesn't cost $1000, they want $1000 because the American healthcare system is a huge money sink that idiots are willing to feed.
 
2014-04-02 02:15:17 PM  

Acravius: The pricing on this is claimed to be $85,000 in order to recoup the $11 Billion purchase price of the distribution rights from the patent from the developing laboratory.

However that only takes ~135,000 treatments to pay that $11 Billion investment.
There are more than 65 Million Hepatitus C suferers in the world, and at this distributor's current pricing for the US market, it would take $4.5 Trillion to cure them all.

I'm sure glad, aspirin, the polio, MMR, and other vaccines/treatments/procedures that we've had for about 60 years, wasn't distributed this way.
Hopefully they'll go to the AIDS/HIV treatment capacity quickly and for $0.40 a day, they can treat and cure Hep C, and take pride in knowing that they have the capacity to make another one of the devastating diseases of the world go the way of Small Pox.


I would love to have your optimism.
 
2014-04-02 02:15:46 PM  

Magorn: And before you start screaming "socialism"   and "Would destroy the incentive to innovate" please keep in mind that the US defense Department has been doing this for YEARS, essentially seizing patents they want (or just ignoring them) in the name of "national security"


I had one of my patents abused by the US Navy - my patent lawyer found it.

We honestly believe they did not know (many times an invention is created at the same time by people who are unaware)  But I was first.It did not need to go to court, they happily paid for my patent and I had a fantastic year proudly knowing my technology was being used.

The navy handled it very professionally, I was very happy.
 
2014-04-02 02:17:17 PM  

Lucky LaRue: Big Pharma creates a drug to save lives and is vastly cheaper and safer than a liver transplant, and they are Evil. Can someone tell me how that works?


They are "evil" beause they created it with a ton of suuport of the govt, non of which is paid back if the drug is profitable (you know that whole privitize profit, socialize risk).

They are evil because the price isn't based on any real costs, but on how much they can squeeze.

That help?
 
2014-04-02 02:17:53 PM  
I'm pretty sure a liver transplant and/or treatment for liver cancer would cost many times more than $85K.  This seems to be cheaper, just not a whole lot cheaper.

Of course, it's cheapest to just not get HepC, so eat clean food and don't have sex with sick people.
 
2014-04-02 02:20:19 PM  

SphericalTime: Yeah, I recently had a scary false positive Hep C test, and my doctors were planning on putting me on this.  The side effects are also a bit scary.

Good thing, I've had two clean tests since then, so yeah, don't need to do this.


For what I know (not much) only a few ways to get Hep C and they're all blood based:  Blood transfusion prior to 1992 (blood was not checked for Hep C prior to this), sharing of needles, non-sterile tattoo equipment and having sex (anal or vaginal) when blood is involved.
 
2014-04-02 02:20:43 PM  

Marcus Aurelius: Gilead Sciences believes the focus is in all the wrong places. "Critics have focused on the per-pill cost or per-bottle cost, but that is really not relevant here. It's how much it costs to cure your patient," said Gregg Alton, Gilead's executive vice president of corporate and medical affairs

In other words, it doesn't matter that it only costs them $1 per pill to manufacture.  They get to price it at the same cost as a liver transplant.

This is perfectly legal, of course, even if it is utterly immoral.  But reeling in $83,000 of profit on every patient sure does assuage one's conscience, if one has one left after this kind of profiteering.


Pharmaceutical shill here. Yeah, it might cost $1 for the raw ingredients to make the pill, but there are other costs. Like the wages of the people who press the tablets, the clean room that the tablets are made in, the wages of the researchers who figured out the treatment was going to work, the clinical and safety studies that needed to be performed. The quality testing, the IT guy that maintains the servers. All of that is overhead and labor. What about the salaries of regulatory people who process the paperwork to get it approved with the FDA. What about marketing? Should pharmaceuticals be barred from advertising?

How much do you think cars could be sold for if the car manufacturers didn't have to spend money on safety tests?
Do you think car companies are acting ethically by pulling in profits after inflating car prices because of their bloated advertising budgets?

I don't like that these drugs cost thousands either, and I, like you, would really like to see socialized medicine happen. But don't pretend that pharmaceuticals manufacture these drugs on the cheap in order to maximize profits. Because if you think that's unethical, you should take a closer look at supplement companies, who are not subject to nearly the same scrutiny and regulations that pharmaceuticals are.
 
2014-04-02 02:22:14 PM  
FTA: Waxman also tackles the socioeconomic role of hepatitis C: "Because Hepatitis C is 'concentrated in low-income, minority patients,'

Not so much any more.  From what I understand 1 in 5 baby boomers have this disease.  They are pretty vocal and if AARP gets into this there will be a helluva fight.
 
2014-04-02 02:23:46 PM  

pippi longstocking: It doesn't cost $1000, they want $1000 because the American healthcare system is a huge money sink that idiots are willing to feed.


Blue Cross will haggle them down. $1000 will be the sticker price.
//I had a surgery recently. The sticker price was $200k, Blue Cross paid about $70k and I paid just over $2k.
///Not only is the American health care system a huge pot of money but it is not clearly priced out.
 
2014-04-02 02:27:23 PM  
This is hilarious to me because this medication is a legitimate breakthrough in comparison to standard treatment.  For once this is not an incremental improvement or "me-too" drug, and people are saying "profiteering", "socialize it", "let a jury decide".

This is an example where the pharmaceutical company actually deserves the money - they cured something, and not some orphan disease but a widespread one.  Let them have the year before a competitor starts to drive the price down... they have less than 20 before it goes generic.  This slow speed in price reduction is the cost required for ensuring safety (5-8 years of expensive clinical trials) and innovation.
 
2014-04-02 02:29:08 PM  
So in other words, it's significantly less expensive than a transplant?
 
2014-04-02 02:29:22 PM  

liam76: Lucky LaRue: Big Pharma creates a drug to save lives and is vastly cheaper and safer than a liver transplant, and they are Evil. Can someone tell me how that works?

They are "evil" beause they created it with a ton of suuport of the govt, non of which is paid back if the drug is profitable (you know that whole privitize profit, socialize risk).

They are evil because the price isn't based on any real costs, but on how much they can squeeze.

That help?


Nope. How much did the research cost? How much support (if any) did they get from the gov? How many other lines of research never paid off, and how are they supposed to finance those if not through this? Drug design is not sure thing, so the price of those drugs that make it to market is dependent on a lot more than raw materials and assembly. Trying to make a profit isn't evil, and in the end it's all that keeps money pumping into new drug development.

that said, the price is still crazy high and I find it immensely entertaining that everyone is siding with the insurance companies
 
2014-04-02 02:29:43 PM  
If a nonprofit organization made these drugs, the cost wouldn't be much lower. >_>

Development cost DOES matter. Drugs are hard as fark to make, because for all science has discovered about how the human body works, there's a hell of a lot more we don't know about it. A lot of drugs fail during the clinical trials because, despite working on rats (the next-best thing to primates, evolutionarily speaking) or cell cultures, there's a big enough difference between those and an entire human that they suddenly don't meet the FDA's safety and/or efficacy standards when applied to the humans -- and if the FDA says they can't sell a drug, then they can't sell a drug (the bar is lower for drugs that treat/cure things with little or no treatments/cures, mind you).

So you have all these failed drugs that you spent a buttload of money on, and once in a while you find a good one, one that works. What do you do? Even if you're a nonprofit organization and just want to break even, you still want to make up for all the development costs -- not just of that drug, but of all the ones that didn't pan out.

What's more, there's a finite amount of time you can make significant money off that pill, because of patents -- a blessing and a curse for both the sick and the corporations alike. They grant a legal monopoly on that drug, but for a finite amount of time. One of the requirements for filing a patent is that you have to give a pretty good description of how to make the thing, so the moment it wears off, everyone else can start making and selling it -- including the generic drug companies that spend little or no money making new drugs, and thus can afford to sell them at low prices (they might have an R&D budget for making the drugs more efficiently, though).

So not only do you need to recover those development costs before you can make a profit (or break even), but you have a finite amount of time (still a fairly long time, though. How long do drug patents last? 20 years?), so you jack the price way up. It's unfortunate for the people who need the drugs, but almost everything I've said would apply to a government-run or nonprofit drug company as much as they would a for-profit one.

Changing who's in charge won't fix the system. Improving our medical knowledge will. The problems don't lie in profiteering corporations, they lie in the fact that we don't have a way to efficiently find cures yet. For all we've learned about the human body, we know jack shiat about the compared to how much we could potentially know, and much of drug discovery consists of reasonably-educated shots in the dark.


You want to make a difference? Get some kind of biochemistry degree. Discover a new protein. Figure out what it does, how it interacts, what inhibits it. Or look at some old protein and discover things about it nobody knew before, or discover a more effective way to simulate a person for drug testing. Add to the sum of human knowledge. Every little bit helps.
 
2014-04-02 02:30:50 PM  
How much does this drug cost outside the US?  I am reminded of a recent case where a woman was billed $80,000 for two doses of scorpion antivenom, which it turned out could be purchased in pharmacies in Mexico for a mere $100 per dose.
 
2014-04-02 02:31:20 PM  
This is good news for people who eat at restaurants in NYC.
 
2014-04-02 02:34:47 PM  
papafree

The first AIDS/HIV cocktails were 20K per monthly treatment dose, that's what the movie Dallas Buyer's Club was all about, and at the time they could be gotten more cheaply in Mexico. Now the improved cocktail is being sold to developing nations at $0.40/day to keep people "below detectable levels"

I don't have a problem with a corporation making profit, but the cost of producing the entire 85 day treatment regimin is only $3.60 in material costs. They are charging $85,000 per treatment cycle.
They only need ~135,000 people treated to recoup their investment and there are 65 Million potential patients.
Even if they charged $1,000 per 85 day treatment cycle they would still have an approximate ~6 times ROI of their $11 Billion distribution right package cost.

That is what is so disgraceful about this story.
 
2014-04-02 02:39:57 PM  

Acravius: They only need ~135,000 people treated to recoup their investment and there are 65 Million potential patients.


It's not just about recouping the costs of that drug in particular, it's about recouping the costs of other drugs they've worked on in the past and/or will work on in the future. Some drug labs don't find a single drug between foundation and closure. You make the most of what you can, when you can, so you can afford to fail later.
 
2014-04-02 02:45:36 PM  
PROTIP:  If you're in America, try not to get raped.

i.imgur.com
 
2014-04-02 02:45:53 PM  
According to these guys: http://www.transplantliving.org/before-the-transplant/financing-a-tra n splant/the-costs/  a liver transplant will end up costing upwards of $500k. Sounds like a pretty decent deal overall.
 
2014-04-02 02:46:09 PM  
I would have sold myself into slavery to pay for this if it came a couple years earlier.


/miss my sister
 
2014-04-02 02:47:50 PM  
This will end once we nationalize the pharmaceutical industry.  Then everything they develop will be free! Even the unicorn tear extract.
 
2014-04-02 02:49:33 PM  

Magorn: Banned on the Run: Marcus Aurelius: Gilead Sciences believes the focus is in all the wrong places. "Critics have focused on the per-pill cost or per-bottle cost, but that is really not relevant here. It's how much it costs to cure your patient," said Gregg Alton, Gilead's executive vice president of corporate and medical affairs

In other words, it doesn't matter that it only costs them $1 per pill to manufacture.  They get to price it at the same cost as a liver transplant.

This is perfectly legal, of course, even if it is utterly immoral.  But reeling in $83,000 of profit on every patient sure does assuage one's conscience, if one has one left after this kind of profiteering.

Sorry to burst your corporation hate bubble, but they won't be making a profit for years

In the exact same way that the Lord of the Rings and the Titanic "didn't make a profit" despite grossing more than $1 billion worldwide and costing about $200 million to make.  Which is to say only if you buy the patently absurd accounting drug companies use and which costs the ascribe to a particular drug (like charging the entire R&D budget to its most sucessful drug)


Sometimes you have to do this.  In my past life I performed reverse engineering on mechanical industrial equipment.  Each reverse engineering cost roughly $50,000.  Our sales hit rate was somewhere between 1 in 10 and 1 in 15.  That means for each project we won, we had to tack on between $500k and $750k.  Typical project sales prices were around $5m to $8m (depending on size and scope).  If we had bad luck and the hit rate went down, it ate into the bottom line- our competitors were also selling projects for $5m to $8m so we couldn't just jack up the price.

Pharmaceutical companies have this problem too.  The difference being they can generally charge whatever they want and cover their costs, so they should always make a profit.  Doesn't mean though that you can just ignore all the development costs for drugs which didn't make the cut.
 
2014-04-02 02:49:49 PM  
img.fark.net
 
2014-04-02 02:50:46 PM  

Robin Hoodie: Nope


Brilliant rebuttal, allow me to rebut, yep.


http://plaza.ufl.edu/rmelk/BestofBME/Publications/uneasyall.pdf 30% of the money for trials comes from the NIH.
That doesn't event ake itno accoutn all the research funded by the govt, non of which is repaid when these companies get a winner.

Robin Hoodie: How much did the research cost? How much support (if any) did they get from the gov?


http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMsa1008268

Read up on it.


In this case the company didn't do the research, they bought out the rights for 11billion (non of which was paid tot h govt who, once again contributed to the research).

As many people have pointed out they could charge 1k per 85 day treatment and make back 6x the cost of the drug.

this is a disgraceful money grab that makes things more costly fro sick people, how you fail to see it as evil is beyond me.


Robin Hoodie: Trying to make a profit isn't evil, and in the end it's all that keeps money pumping into new drug development


I never said making a profit is evil, they cousl make a lot of profit without pricing it so high, it is evil to price it just to the point where it is cheaper than a liver transplant.
 
2014-04-02 02:52:33 PM  
I guess what needs to be reiterated is that Gilead Sciences didn't develop the drug.

Gilead Sciences paid $11 Billion to a small research laboratory for the DISTRIBUTION RIGHTS.

So the laboratory was paid for their Patent, all of the cost was apparently covered by the $11 Billion.

The cost per 85 day dose is $3.60 for materials.

The 85,000 dollar price tag recompensates Gilead Sciences their investment in ~135,000 doses including packaging, labor and everything else.

There are ~65 Million Hepatitus C suferers in the world today.

To break even, Gilead Sciences could price the drug at ~$160 per 85 day prescription, and at ~$260 they would still make roughly 6.5 Billion dollars in profit.

That is why the $85,000 price tag is so galling for this instance of corporate greed.

Ag
 
2014-04-02 02:53:57 PM  

Skail: b2theory: Marcus Aurelius: Gilead Sciences believes the focus is in all the wrong places. "Critics have focused on the per-pill cost or per-bottle cost, but that is really not relevant here. It's how much it costs to cure your patient," said Gregg Alton, Gilead's executive vice president of corporate and medical affairs

In other words, it doesn't matter that it only costs them $1 per pill to manufacture.  They get to price it at the same cost as a liver transplant.

This is perfectly legal, of course, even if it is utterly immoral.  But reeling in $83,000 of profit on every patient sure does assuage one's conscience, if one has one left after this kind of profiteering.

If your numbers are correct, you are justified. How much did it cost to develop from chemistry to clinical trials?

How much of the chemistry was based off knowledge gained from research funded by public grants?


And how much did you chip into the stage 3 trials? Quit using this stupid argument that completely ignores the biggest cost factor
 
2014-04-02 02:56:42 PM  
All well and good until the AARPers scream about it, or developers in one of those "Dot-head"istan countries synthesize it for less than 10 cents a dose, the U.S. sues over it, trying to maintain the "innovation charge" for developing it. THen it's fungible from there.dilbert.com
Roughly the same kind of comparison.
 
2014-04-02 02:57:06 PM  

Wolf892: Love living in Canada where costs such as these are of little concern. :-D


Don't be so cocky... my Wife needed a medication that was to treat a condition it was not approved for(even though it is approved in other countries) and she was close to having to pay the $4000/month for it.  Fortunately some damn good doctors fought the system and got it for her.

This drug would first need to be approved and funded, potential taking money away form other treatments.  So we would all benefit from a reasonable price, not just Americans and their messed up system.
 
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