The Pennsylvania Health Care Plan: Negotiating Drug Pricing for a Safer, Healthier Pennsylvania

By Scott Tyson M.D

I am a Pediatrician who has been in practice for over 30 years. I have cared for hundreds of children with severe nut and dairy allergies who may live or die based on having an epipen available.

The Epipen was created in 1973 paid for by the taxpayers 100%. In 2007, it cost $57 for a package of two. Today, it costs $600 creating over 40% of annual profits for Mylan; that’s over $1 billion/year. The same package costs $85 in France. The CEOs salary went from $2.5 million in 2007 to $19 million today. This is just one example of a pervasive trend.

Daraprim, a cancer and AIDS drug, went from $13.50 to $750/pill in one day.
Doxycycline, to treat Lyme disease, went from $20/treatment in 2012 to $1849 in 2014.
Digoxin, to treat heart problems went from $.11/pill in 2012 to $1.10/pill in 2014.
Harvoni, to cure hepatitis C costs $94,000 in the US, $900 in India, and $1200 in Egypt.
Hip Replacement in the US costs $40,364, while the same procedure in Spain costs $7,371.

There are two solutions to this crisis. Nationalize the pharmaceutical industry, which would only solve one area of our nonfunctional non-healthcare system. The other solution is a single payer, improved medicare for all system, where we negotiate drug prices, just like in other industrialized nations and our own VA. We can do this under The Pennsylvania Health Care Plan, Pennsylvania House Bill 1688, introduced by Representative Pam Delissio. Contact your state representative and ask them to support this important plan. Join us and get more information at Healthcare4AllPA.org.

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