No, this is not the first thing Ramin has posted on this general topic, and no, it’s not the first time he’s gone after the real issue. It is, however, particularly poignant given the circumstances and worth a read.
Americans pay four to 10 times more for prescription drugs than what citizens of other developed countries pay. It’s true that drug prices must be high enough to pay for research and development, but there is no reason that only American consumers should bear that cost. We effectively subsidize the generous national health systems of Canada and other western countries by allowing them to get away with paying much lower prices that don’t reflect the much greater R&D costs of the drugs they use.
When I point out that I can reduce the cost of medicine in the United States by 80% in a single day without screwing one patient or killing one person by withholding (rationing) care I usually get blank stares in response. It’s utterly true, however; when you pay 4-10x — or even 1,000x as much as a market price for something that simply putting a stop to that takes 60-90% or more out of the cost.
This post was published at Market-Ticker on 2017-06-13.