Doctors blast Big Pharma over cancer drug costs

Doctors blast Big Pharma over cancer drug costs

A group of 118 oncologists slammed big health care over the rising costs of cancer drugs, and its impacts on patients.

A group of 118 leading oncologists are speaking out against pharmaceutical firms, urging them to lower the prices of cancer drugs.

In an article, the doctors said that cancer drugs have risen by an average of a whopping $8,500 per year in the last 15 years, according to a report.

This is bad for patients and the health care system as a whole, which must bear the burden of these onerous costs. Considering the fact that the average gross household income in the U.S. is about $52,000 annually, and an insured patient tha thas cancer needs $120,000 per year to pay for a drug, the out of pocket expenses will be up to $30,000, completely wiping out a huge chunk of their income, they wrote.

The doctors want legislation that would allow Medicare to negotiate with drug companies directly and bring those costs down.

Pharmaceutical companies are hitting back, however, with the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturing Association arguing that cancer medicine represent only a fifth of total spending on cancer treatments. And if the policy proposals the doctors are backing were to be adopted, it would send a “chilling signal” to the healthcare marketplace and may harm development and innovation of new cancer drugs.

The doctors argue that the price of cancer drugs is doubling or even tripling over the course of just a few years rather than decades, and if it keeps getting higher it will totally swallow up people’s income, financially devastating families.



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