Friday, December 27, 2013
The New Year is approaching, bringing huge changes in healthcare coverage for most Americans. This recent focus on healthcare costs has highlighted the extreme financial burden of rare diseases; effective therapies may have been developed, but the cost of R & D to the pharmaceutical companies is huge, compared to the number of potential users. Take Hereditary Angioedema; billions of dollars were spent on development of a very effective therapy, 95% of which was spent on unsuccessful drug trials. To recoup this investment, patent rights prevent generic alternatives, and the cost is passed on to the some 1 in 50,000. Each patient spends upwards of $100,000 per year to manage their condition. Perhaps this shake-up will force administrators to examine the real cost of healthcare, from pre-clinical trials to approval.