Monday, March 7, 2011

about patents for drugs and innovation

Lipitor a 10 billion drug is going of the patent and Pfizer will lose the cash stream from this patent.Somehow the media is feeling sorry for them. The whole drug innovation and patent system has served the drug industry and all inventors reasonably well.
Now it has become a racket to try to increase the time for the patents by filing appeals against the generic manufacturers.We should all CELEBRATE this going of the patent with a party.Cost savings to the nation will be from this one drug will be in tune of 6 to 8 billion dollars. Worldwide savings will be even higher.

The questions have been raised by several studies in Canada where it has been found that the positive effects of lowering Cholesterol by medication is minimal for generally healthy citizens.It may be asked if we are creating Mega drugs with little benefits to the public.It is time that we study how any billion dollars in expenses for the society can benefit the nation.

This argument is not against the special care given to patients in USA.But is about public funds spent on all the systems from aggressive prenatal care to aggressive end of life care.

The money saved by one drug going generic is enough to end one major killer of humanity like Malaria (over 2 million deaths a year).

We need to reduce human suffering and improve quality of life not extend marginal lives by few hours in vegetative state.Given the choice like all informed people we will choose life of Independence over life dependent on even inanimate machines.

Duff Wilson writing for New York Times states that ten drugs with sales of 50 billion dollars will go of patent this year.We have a potential of saving 40 billion dollars now on per year.If we look at the benefits from this protection ending we could wipe out many diseases from the poorest parts of the world so in a global village we will protect us from those diseases becoming epidemics .

The new drug innovation should be speeded and efforts be mad that new drugs be reasonably priced to benefit the patients otherwise we will have two tier service and cost for medical care.I was checking that the drug cocktail needed as first line of defence against Aids is 3500 hundred dollars per month in US and in India though it is very difficult for people without health care to afford the drugs a months supply is 40 us dollars per month.We will be hard pressed if poorer nations did not honor our drug patents to protect the lives of Its citizens.

In USA we had paid Bayer several billion dollars for Cipro for the Anthrax scare while a Pharmacology specialist friend had told me that drugs could have been manufactured by National health services for only a few million dollars and stored for use in case of eventual emergency .If it would be still under patent protection royalty could be paid to the rightful owners. He told me that Cipro was not under any such protection.

No comments:

Post a Comment