Sunday, March 02, 2008

Pharma arguments and hogwash

The heparin manufacturing scandal sheds light on the typically rampant cynicism of U.S. Pharma arguments. When before the Medicare drug benefit there was a lot of pressure to allow importation of Canadian drugs, both sides were rather disingenuous in their arguments.

The pro-import side typically just presented it as an issue of competition and of not letting U.S. companies rip off U.S. citizens. What went unsaid is that what we were importing (and I thought it was in many ways an excellent idea) was not really Canadian drugs, but Canadian price controls. Since “price controls” is a four-letter word in the American lexicon, this was rarely stated.]

On their side and much more cynically, Pharma companies (with FDA complicity) stirred up fears about FDA approval and importation of allegedly dangerous “foreign drugs”. Unsaid was how many "American" drugs were really manufactured in whole or in part abroad (something I noticed at the time because I had run into shortages of prescribed asthma pharmaceuticals from time to time and had heard it was on account of problems at foreign factories).

The heparin scandal really points up big-time just how intellectually dishonest and cynical pro-Pharma arguments often are.

1 comment:

Vanessa said...

That heparin manufacturing scandal in U.S. Pharmacy was really a shock to me at first time I came to know about it. This was really a big loss to them and it also affected there respect in the foreign market.