Healthcare in this country cost too much; individual drugs change prices at the whims of pharmaceutical companies. And while drug companies complain constantly about the high cost of research, they fail to mention that almost all FDA-approved drugs over the past several years relied on basic research funded by American taxpayers.
Americans pay twice as much as Australians and three times as much as the Dutch on healthcare due to lack of price control. This all started when the Clinton administration revoked the law that required pharmaceutical companies to charge Americans reasonable prices for medicines developed at government expense (search: National Institutes of Health Notice Rescinding Reasonable Pricing Clause). Some progressive lawmakers tried to reinstate the law, but Republicans and Democrats (including the Obama Administration) joined together to halt those initiatives.
Pharmaceutical company-Gilead just announced that it will charge privately insured Americans more than $3,000 each for a 5-day COVID treatment that was developed with financial support from American taxpayers. The company can offer this treatment at $10 and still make a profit. It remains unclear how much of the $3,000-per-patient cost — if any — will be covered by insurers, and how much will be yet another out-of-pocket expense for COVID positive patients. What is clear is that for many Americans, the price will be significantly higher than the one charged to customers in other countries, whose governments -- unlike Medicare -- are permitted to negotiate lower prices for all of their residents.
As an American citizen, I urge you to gather your colleagues to remove the ban of the Reasonable Pricing Clause.