Friday, June 16, 2006

Drug companies are evil: Part 6078956

Hey, a cheap colon cancer drug in really cheap quantities that anyone can afford, can cure a common form of degenerative blindness. Great news right?

Not to the drug company that produces it. They want to stop the affordable saving of thousands from blindness by banning the use of the colon cancer drug for blindness, split off the element that cures blindness and charge a hundred times more for it.

Ever wanted to lynch an entire corporate board of directors - you know, in the last ten minutes I mean.


Gazetteer said...

Nice catch.

Only 6 million and change?


Dr. Dawg said...

Well, thanks for getting my blood boiling on a Sunday morning. My Mom had wet macular degeneration--not to mention a singularly unsympathetic eye-doctor. At the end, she could neither hear nor see, and music and reading were her passions.

I blogged about this practice right here in Canada this past March--the drug in this case is Thalomid, beyond cheap, which turned out to be a last-chance drug for multiple myeloma. Bureaucrats at both Health Canada and in Ontario were about to let a man die because he couldn't afford a $6000/month "approved" treatment with a new drug, Velcade. (They slithered out of it a few weeks later by claiming a "clerical error.")

Thalomid could be available to everyone in Canada, but the Big Pharma folks played the same game here--they declined to apply for a license.

Lynching? Too good for the lot of 'em.

Cliff said...

dr. dawg, thanks for sharing your story - this story blew my mind when I encountered it. I'm amazed it hasn't got more coverage.

The free market ideologues like to rant about how uncontrolled costs will destroy healthcare and private healthcare is the answer - but it's the costs of the private componants of the healthcare system such as drug costs that are exploding while the public componants costs remain steady.

It seems counter-intuituve to expand the private componants.

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