A favorite target of some politicians has always been the Pharmaceutical Industry. Every year there are stories and speeches by candidates for President or Congress about how drugs cost too much (gives you insight into their desire for price controls, which would destroy research and development of new drugs, by the way) and promises by candidates that they will “Stand up to the drug industry,” to paraphrase Hillary Clinton from the debate last Saturday night.
Well, those evil bastards are at it again, this time finding a promising treatment for Alzheimer’s disease.
But would this be possible in a world where Democrats have their way? It takes on average 12 years and more than $800 million to bring a drug to market. Why so much? The FDA requires developers to jump through so many hoops, deal with so much red tape and regulation that drug companies can’t move any quicker or cheaper.
Yet the developers of new treatments and cures only have a limited window of a few years (before patents expire and generic manufacturers can step in to make copies) in which to recoup those costs and a profit to be used to develop new treatments and cures. By imposing price controls, they’d really be imposing profit controls. Limiting profit means limited resources with which to develop new drugs. So if you want the price controls on drugs advocated by some, you’d better hope you either stay healthy or come down with something for which there is already a treatment, because unless you get something that afflicts a lot of people, no company will be able to afford to research a treatment for you.
One last question, how much is staying alive and healthy worth to you? Can you really put a price on it? Sure, we’d all like to live in a world where prescription drugs are free and everyone was healthy and happy, where companies poured billions into research simply for the common good, but that’s not ever going to happen; it can’t. Things cost, the cost of those things must be recouped. They must be more than recouped if you hope to try and repeat success.
So next time you hear someone say that they’ll “stand up to the big drug companies” ask yourself if the end result will be worth it. If your answer is yes, good luck in the future. If your answer is no, it’s time to start speaking up.