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Thursday, November 7, 2013

Lower your prescription drug cost

    One of our poodles has glaucoma and the vet has prescribed 3 different medications for treating this condition.  One of these prescriptions costs $140 to refill every 2 months.  I checked around at different pharmacies in our area but didn't find that were substantially lower on price.  Anyone who owns an older pet can testify that medical and prescription costs for their pets can be more than they pay for their own medical care.
     While listening to a News Hour podcast I learned of a website to find the cheapest price for any medication in your area.  The news report showed how arbitrary the pricing of drugs can be.  Interestingly some of the highest prices are with national chains like Target, CVS and Walgreens.  Even though they probably have low wholesale costs for drugs because of their size they seem to use this advantage to pad their bottom lines rather than passing on the savings to consumers.  It seems that the free marketplace that is supposed to keep costs low because of competition isn't working too well with drug costs in the United States.  We pay the highest costs in the world for our prescriptions.  We find ourselves in this situation because of the political lobbying power of the drug manufacturers. This system is explained in the Corporate Examiner in this way:

    "The pharmaceutical industry has long been a first-rate interest group. PhRMA employs one of the largest lobbying staffs on K Street, makes hefty political contributions, and funds extensive issue advertising campaigns; and the trend has been increasingly partisan. In 1990, for example, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company donated $150, 260 to political candidates, with 31% reaching Democrats and 69% reaching Republicans. By 2002, Bristol-Myers Squibb was donating $1,590,813 to politicians, and only 16% went to Democrats ( PhRMA's political power has set the stage for industry-wide business strategies. Political connections have helped drug companies to battle price restraints, stretch patent guidelines, and avoid litigation."
   The United States is only one of two countries in the world to allow advertising to the public of prescription drugs.  This advertising is directing consumers to request certain drugs from their doctors and almost always these drugs are new drugs that are the most costly.   It is hard not to watch the nightly national newscasts without watching one drug ad after another.  They always end with "Ask your doctor about......"

    Before my last medical appointment I couldn't help but notice the two young, attractive women who were taking with the receptionist.  Right away I knew these were drug salespersons.  Have you ever seen an older, male drug salesperson?  Are male doctors so gullible that they are influenced in their prescribing of drugs that they can be influenced by attractive young women?  Sadly, apparently they are or the drug manufacturers would not use this method.


Anonymous said...

Your main point is correct, but you weaken it with your data selection. Bristol's 2002 contributions were heavily slanted towards R's because that's who was in complete control back then. Look at their 2012 contributions It shouldn't be a complete shock to discover that, in donations to candidates, 58% went to Democrats and 42% to Republicans. The largest recipient of their donations was ... Barack Obama. Successful companies don't permanently side with one party. They side with whoever's in power. In 2012, guess who that was?

Re: older male drug salesman - yes, there are lots of them. The fact that YOU didn't see them is meaningless.

duanestclair said...

I can agree that money flows more to the party in power. Link shows the giving of many drug companies. I have seen many salespersons in a variety of offices and have yet to see any older male sales persons. Another writer thought the same too.
I also post my name to my comments unlike you.