Friday, September 25, 2015
The bizarre price points at Turing Pharma
Dr. Mary J. Ruwart, libertarian author (I believe from Charlotte NC) of the “Healing our World” book series, has an interesting and detailed perspective on the recent controversy over Turing Pharma’s CEO Mark Shkreli, himself just 32, and his raising the price on a drug (Daraprim) used to treat certain parasitic infections in AIDS by a factor of about 50, to a whopper (without cheese) $750 a pill. Her link is here.
This event could have posed grave problems for some HIV patients. The CEO has partially backed down. Ruwart says that this result could come indirectly from misapplied FDA regulation. It might have come from greed and short-term “shareholder capitalism” too, as the CEO’s background is hedge funds more than medicine. Even Donald Trump loves to talk about "price points" to his apprentices.
Will Jack Andraka’s pancreatic cancer test run into over-regulation? There’s an oncologist in Philadelphia who personally profited over $10 million for developing a new, specialized vaccine. I guess we don’t have objection to doctors getting rich (or even pre-med students) when they really invent something. That’s more wholesome capitalism.
The name “Turing” seems ironic, doesn’t it.