Under the recently passed Medicare reform law, people with low incomes or high drug costs can count on Medicare paying all or virtually all of their drug expenses.
The fact that not everyone pays the same price for prescription drugs is not “unfair.” Discriminatory pricing exists because it benefits consumers: more products get sold to willing buyers than if a single price were offered.(5) Drug companies are not evil.
The medical and psychological effects are very obvious.
Addicts cannot function as normal members of society.
Drug company profits weren’t so different from Coca-Cola (20 percent), Bank of New York (19 percent), Mellon Financial (33 percent), Microsoft (29 percent), Oracle (24 percent), or even the publishers of newspapers that routinely attack the industry, such as Gannett (publisher of USA Today--13 percent) and Knight-Ridder (15 percent).
Drug companies invest about 17 percent of sales in research and development, well above the 3.9 percent average for all industries.Importation is an unavoidable and beneficial outcome of changing technology, free trade, and globalization. are paying two and three times, or more, for the same drugs sold in other countries.Free trade benefits everyone, and governments ought not cave in to special pleading by interest groups seeking to avoid competition or limit consumer choice.(4) Current drug pricing is unfair. So long as importation is illegal, drug companies do not have a strong incentive to press foreign governments to lift their price controls and have their citizens pay their fair share of the cost of discovering new drugs.(5) Drug companies are evil. Their profits are huge and excessive, proof of the lack of competition.This essay looks at some of the effects of drug use on society, and suggests some solutions to the problem.Drug abuse causes multiple problems for countries and communities.The industry’s median profit of 18 percent in 2001 was indeed higher than any other industry, but its investors and shareholders take on more risk than those who invest elsewhere.According to Fortune magazine, company profits ranged from 28 percent (Amgen) to minus 9 percent (Gemzyne), hardly evidence of collusion or monopoly.Many people are paying too much for their prescription drugs or can’t afford to buy them at all.The state of Illinois can’t afford 10 and 12 percent annual increases in the amount it spends on prescription drugs.They neglect or abuse their families, and eventually require expensive treatment or hospitalization. Huge police resources are needed to fight smuggling and dealing. Children need to be told at home and in school about drugs.Criminal gangs and mafia underworlds develop with the money from drugs. People need to be aware of the effects so that they can make avoid this problem A second approach is to increase police manpower and powers to stop dealers and to enforce the law. Families and counselors need to talk to children and people at risk.