Most Americans (79 percent) say the cost of prescription drugs is “unreasonable” (Ref. 8). Prohibitive costs can lead to medication nonadherence, which negatively impacts health outcomes and contributes to increased healthcare costs in the United States (Ref. 9). In a recent national poll, almost one-third (29 percent) of U.S. adults have reported “not taking their medicines as prescribed” due to the expense, and almost 1 in 10 (8 percent) said this led to a decline in their condition (Ref. 8). National news outlets have reported on the dire consequences of patients rationing immunosuppressive medications needed after organ transplants or delaying cancer treatments because of costs (Refs. 10 and 11).
In other words, medicine in the U.S. is so expensive that people are getting very sick or dying because they can’t afford it.
Step 1: Make it legal to import some prescription drugs from Canada.
Step 2: ?!#@&^~???
Step 3: Affordable drugs for U.S. patients!
Contributing to public frustration on this issue is the disparity between prices that Americans pay for brand name medications as compared with other developed countries. The reasons for such price disparities are varied.
And if you’re expecting a Republican administration to talk about the reasons for the price disparities, you’re still waiting for Republicans to Put Country Before Party and really shouldn’t be allowed to roam the internet without supervision.
In addition to the expected refusal to address the reason for high cost of medicine, the rule has a couple of problems starting with the list of what would be excluded from the plan to raid Canada’s medicine cabinet.
(1) A controlled substance (as defined in section 102 of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 802));
That would knock out all scheduled drugs including Ritalin, OxyContin, Tylenol with Codeine, Lyrica and Xanax.
(2) A biological product (as defined in section 351 of the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 262));
(1) The term “biological product” means a virus, therapeutic serum, toxin, antitoxin, vaccine, blood, blood component or derivative, allergenic product, protein (except any chemically synthesized polypeptide), or analogous product, or arsphenamine or derivative of arsphenamine (or any other trivalent organic arsenic compound), applicable to the prevention, treatment, or cure of a disease or condition of human beings
So much for cheaper insulin.
(3) An infused drug (including a peritoneal dialysis solution);
Also including chemotherapy.
(4) An intravenously injected drug;
OK, maybe it would be easier to list what isn’t excluded.
(5) A drug that is inhaled during surgery;
We forgot the anesthetic!
(6) An intrathecally or intraocularly injected drug;
An epidural for labor is probably the best known intrathecal injection.
(7) A drug that is subject to a risk evaluation and mitigation strategy under section 505-1 of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act;
E.g. Esketamine, which is used for treatment-resistant depression.
This plan won’t cut the cost of insulin or chemotherapy, or lots of other things people need to stay alive. But at least boner pills would be cheaper.
Or so I assume.
It’s hard to imagine Republicans going to all this trouble otherwise.
The biggest hurdle is that Canada keeps saying Take of, Eh? to the plan no matter how often President Demidactyls announces he’s going to move on the country’s supply of prescription meds like a bitch.
The Canadian government criticized the plan. Its U.S. ambassador said last month that importing medicines from Canada would not significantly lower U.S. prices. Reuters previously reported that Canada had warned U.S. officials it would oppose any import plan that might threaten the Canadian drug supply or raise costs for Canadians.
“Our government will protect our supply of and access to medication that Canadians rely on,” said Alexander Cohen, a spokesman for Canada’s Minister of Health.
I wish we didn’t live in a time when we had to worry about a Republican president starting a war for drugs, but here we are.
Azar — who is probably persona non-grata at Lilly right now — is gamely trying to roll this turd uphill, despite the fact it’s about as popular as shingles.
Speaking to reporters in Florida on Wednesday, Azar said Canadians’ cheaper drug prices were the result of a free ride off of American investment and innovation.
American investment and innovation can’t come up with with a way to cut the cost for domestic drugs, therefore America has to point at another country’s drugs and scream MINE! GIMME!
“Obviously the Canadians are going to be looking out for Canadians,” he said. “We’re here to put American patients first.”
But not in a way that actually puts American patients first because most American patients aren’t billionaires, so fuck ’em. However, shouting about mean nasty Canadians who won’t give back “our” drugs could prompt some of the celldwellers to buy and burn some maple leaf merch, which might make the IMPOTUS feel better. Especially when he finds out that the donors don’t like the plan.