Drugs That Were Once Cheap but Are Now Expensive Is Pissing Me Off

An Irish drugmaker, Horizon, increased the price of their painkiller, Vimovo, to nearly $3,000 a bottle, which is 22 times more expensive than when the company acquired it in late 2013.  The two main ingredients can be purchased separately — for just $36. More from this article:

A spokesman for Dublin-based Horizon said that the $2,979 wholesale price does not reflect “the cost to patients or the cost to the system.” The company said it has programs to ensure that commercially-insured patients have access “at an affordable price” — even if the patient’s insurance refuses to cover the cost. Horizon estimates that 98% of all insured Vimovo patients pay $10 or less out of pocket.

A few things here.  Why is there no REAL competition to bring prices down?  I have seen this with cheap drugs (steroid creams, epinephrine, some anti-parasite meds, inhalers, etc) and it is driving me nuts. And don’t give some lame response that the government should control healthcare system to bring prices down.  Yeah, how is that working for Medicare?  They can’t even negotiate the prices down for them.

Second, why do the “insured” patients get a break and not the cash paying ones?  I have always hated this.  They are not second-class citizens. Why are they discriminated against?

There is so much wrong with our system that has NOTHING to do with “free market” principles.  I am not an economist nor am I a lawyer but this gouging, colluding, and monopolizing is disgusting and needs to stop.

What are your thoughts on this?

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