- 41 of Pfizer’s drugs have been picked for a price hike on January 15, averaging 5%.
- Pfizer noted Friday that the increases will be offset by higher rebates and discounts offered to insurance companies and pharmacy benefit managers.
- Pfizer had the highest profit total ($4.1 billion) of any publicly traded health care company in the third quarter.
The announcement that Pfizer is raising drug prices on most of its drugs is sure to light the debate around drug pricing and pharma profits. I’m wondering how Pfizer employees feel this morning?
When a company, like Pfizer, acts in a way that is contrary to the public good employee have a way of rationalizing the bad behavior. They can believe the PhRMA bullshit around how expensive it is to develop new drugs, even though research has disputed the costs. They can think that they are helping people even though 30% of people can’t afford to have Rx’s filled or they can just ignore it all to keep the paychecks coming.
There are some people, I’m sure, who understand that doing what is right is more important than doing what’s best for shareholders but too often their voices are muted. With layoffs on the horizon, I’m sure Pfizer employees are doing what’s necessary to secure their jobs. Working in an atmosphere of fear is not conducive to doing what’s right.
Something happened to pharma. It went from producing great products at a great price to changing the focus on the company balance sheet. In doing so patients have been left behind. Too many corporations have realized that they can make a lot of money in healthcare and in doing so are adding to costs.
If I worked for Pfizer I would be ashamed of the actions of my company. I would be louder voice to remind company executives that we have a moral obligation to ensure everyone can get our drugs regardless of income and I would be willing to walk out the door if my conscience bothered me.