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Commentary

Profits and the development of drugs
Linda Gorman, Denver Post, 7-24-05

Gorman skewers arguments by some critics that allowing the government to set prices for drugs will lead to more value and better health care for American consumers:

Seriously ill people generally lack political power. When government pays for health care, they are considered financial burdens. In nationalized health care systems, government officials manage drug pricing and pharmaceutical company profits to please healthy interest groups, not to cure the seriously ill. Government also ignores the future. In the long run, someone else will be in office.

For profit-seeking companies, sick people are opportunities. As opportunities, the ill have a far better chance of survival. In Britain, the government controls health care and pharmaceutical profits. Voters are kept happy with visiting nurses and free rides to hospitals. Cancer patients have limited access to modern chemotherapy drugs deemed 'too expensive.' The British breast cancer mortality rate is 46 percent. In the U.S., it is 25 percent.


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