Monday, February 16, 2009

Separated from above post

I decided Crystal deserved her own post, separate from my mini-rant, but I still wanted to include the information ... so here it is:

Big Pharma:
Let me just say, for all Big Pharma has a bad reputation, they are truly doing some great things. In my opinion, they deserve to have their patents extended but also be more stricly regulated. In my facility, we were NOT a research facility, so I don't have first-hand experience, but a drug takes about 20 years and potentially billions of dollars to develop. That's a long time and a lot of money. From development of the drug to testing to clinical trials to approval (and that doesn't include the hundreds more drugs that are "duds" and never make it to approval). However, a patent only last 27 years (don't quote me, but I think that's what it is). So, the drug company only has around 7 years to make money on it. Of course they're going to charge a fortune for that drug - that's the only time they have to recoup their investment! Once the patent is up, all the generic drug companies have the right to use the other company's ingredient list to make the drug, too, without investing in research and development. I firmly believe patents should last longer, but that prices should be a bit better controlled, so the company can still make their money, but prices are fixed so that consumers aren't screwed. (Drug prices in Canada are way cheaper than in the US, partially for that reason.) Generic drug companies don't make new drugs, they just make existing drugs, so if Big Pharma won't make new drugs for heart disease, cancer, or migraines, we don't get new drugs! Yes, I don't agree with all of Big Pharma's actions, but they do some very good things.
Rant on Big Pharma over.

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