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Ethics Of Pharmaceutical Pricing Essay

1557 words - 7 pages

The pharmaceutical industry, based on organizational ethics, has been lately facing many ethical issues, and considering that it is a globally important industry affecting the lives of incredible amounts of people worldwide, these issues cannot be ignored and are, in fact, taken very seriously. What is said to be the greatest controversy is the high pricing of certain drugs or products, making them unreachable by many.

The pharmaceutical industry is daily expanding business worldwide, and what not many know is that the prices of the products or drugs are mostly controlled by the actually company which owns the business, meaning that the company will certainly accept the advantage in order ...view middle of the document...

“Price discrimination can be thought of as a way for pharmaceutical companies to hedge against this huge inherent risk by allowing them to take advantage of the entire market.” (Bhanji, Harvard)

For instance, patients with heart diseases are to be kept under control also by the usage of various medicines. Now imagine a client whose insurance does not cover one of those products, and which price is too high for the patient to afford. “…for wealthier countries, it makes sense that they are able to pay higher prices for drugs compared to countries with a lower national income” (Bhanji, Harvard) however, that does not make every individual of that country rich. A study has shown that “…health care costs are rising, and more than one in five people over age 50 say they have skipped doctor visits, switched to cheaper medications, or simply avoided certain medications altogether because the expense was too high.” (Eichler, The Huffington Post)

From my own experience, my grandmother suffers from asthma, and last time I saw her, she was carrying a small purse around all the time, in which she kept the medicines she has to take on a daily basis. Literally eight different medicines, some which expensive and not covered by her insurance, which she manages to buy with the help of family. Unfortunately, though, not all families would be willing to do so, especially today with the current situation, many elders are left alone.

This emphasis on profit from the pharmaceutical industry harms many individuals, making it clear that most ethical practices are completely put aside for the benefit of the company. “Rich countries want to slash health costs.” (Economist) Lets focus on new systems that were created by the pharmaceutical industry whose purpose was to help the public.

“Me too” drugs are part of the system, and these products are replicas with little differences of famous brand products, and their purpose is to be cheaper. One might say that this idea is great, however, the money it costs does not go to the actual making and studying of the drug, since they are “imitation” of already existing drugs which took long term researching, which costs money, in order to be created. This is also called generic substitution “A generic drug has the same active ingredient(s) as the brand name version, in the same strength or concentration. It has the same chemical name, dosage form, and route of administration, and pro- duces the same therapeutic effect.” (Meer, Lodestone)
When buying a product from a famous brand, part of what we pay goes to the research aisle of the company, while with the “me too” drugs, the money just goes to the company, making it profit incredibly since there is no interest in the development or research of the product. “The total average cost of developing a new drug is more than $1 billion over the course of 15 years of research and testing.” (Bhanji, Harvard) and what needs to be known is that it is a three-phase process involving other...

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