One of the things we take for granted in the UK is the cost of our prescription medications. This is all part of the NHS and the majority of patients are too young/old or have chronic conditions which mean that they don’t pay.
Even those who don’t benefit from free prescriptions are not asked to pay the cost price of their medication but a fixed fee.
This means the NHS as almost a monopoly buyer is able to secure even the latest and most expensive medications at a pretty good prices.
How very different from the the US where public health programmes are barred by law from using their buying strength to negotiate big discounts for pharmaceuticals. This in one of the reasons why US health is so expensive.
To take an example. I an on a newish medication called Rivaroxaban which controls a genetic condition that causes me to have blood clots. The NHS pays about $2 per day for my pill which keeps me alive. The US price for exactly the same medication is just under $16 which many patients have to pay themselves.
Is it any wonder that the cost of pharmaceuticals is the biggest healthcare issue in US politics. The Democrats have promised to take action and Mr.Trump is also saying the same.
After Tuesday’s elections it clear that something will happen and big pharma is likely to be squeezed.