Pharma itself responsible for low ratings

SUMMARY: The pharma industry is responsible for its low ratings. The industry has done nothing to acknowledge that they are listening to the concerns of the public and continues to focus on one thing: profits.

This past year pharma companies have essentially done everything they can to erode the public trust. Here are some examples:

Robert Bradway of Amgen, has given $60,000 of his own money to candidates since the 2018 midterm elections 10 months ago to Republicans. Ricks, the Eli Lilly CEO, directed $30,000 to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell alone — $20,200 to the senator’s campaign committees and $9,800 to the Kentucky Republican Party.

The drugmaker Novartis concealed manipulated data from the Food and Drug Administration while applying for approval of an extremely expensive gene therapy treatment and then delayed reporting the issue.”

 A survey by the Decision Resource Group reveals that only 34% of physicians feel that pharmaceutical websites are trustworthy. Even fewer (barely a quarter of the 2,784 doctors surveyed) see pharma websites as credible sources for professional information.

in 2019, more than 3,400 drugs have boosted their prices, a 17% increase compared with the roughly 2,900 drug price increases at the same time in 2018, according to a new analysis by Rx Savings Solutions, a consultant to health plans and employers.

The average deductible is now 212% higher than it was in 2008. Employers cover more people than any other insurer and account for about 20% of all health care spending — almost $700 billion in 2017

Richard Gonzalez, C.E.O. of AbbVie, told a congressional hearing that his pay was tied to the price of the company’s drug for rheumatoid arthritis and other conditions, Humira.  The annual per-patient cost of Humira doubled between 2012 and 2018 to $38,000. In 2016 the $3.3 billion spent on the drug by Medicare and Medicaid accounted for 31 cents of every dollar spent on Humira in the U.S

A month’s supply of Truvada costs roughly $6 to make and sells for more than $1,600 in the United States. Truvada was developed largely with taxpayer dollars. Gilead has earned $36.2 billion on Truvada since 2004, according to its annual reports.

Last year, US giant Pfizer, the world’s largest drug company by pharmaceutical revenue, made an eye-watering 42% profit margin. Source: BBC

This is just a fraction of proof that profits are more important than patients. Where are the pharma influencers now?

In addition to pharma some trade magazines and agencies are also to blame

Those of us IN the industry are well too aware that a lot of trade magazines are rubbish. They continually suck up to the industry because they need their ad dollars, and then they pat them on the back with award dinners that cost a lot of money. They are also experts at sponsoring trade conferences which are nothing more than a way to make more money.

Then there are the agencies that keep their mouths shut when they should be pushing back against bad ideas. You know that most agencies are not going to risk business dollars to do what’s right for patients.

There is a lot of blame to go around but it’s time to push back. We need to do what’s right when nobody is looking and act like patients are with us at every meeting.