As the wife and caregiver to a stage 4 cancer patient I shudder every time I hear Members of Congress talk about enacting price controls on pharmaceuticals such as the H.R. 3 proposal currently before Congress.
Americans have greater access to cutting edge treatments and cures because our government does not dictate prices. I have spoken to cancer patients from around the world who came here for needed treatments because price controls at home restrict access to care and effectively seal their fate. Thanks to our biopharmaceutical industry we are a beacon of hope for many. Price controls will extinguish that light.
Developing these treatments is expensive, but can we place a value on the lives of our loved ones? Researching and developing these treatments and cures is a business. Businesses that do not make profits do not remain in business. Bringing new drugs to market can cost billions of dollars, and if recouping those development dollars is not possible, the investment can’t be made. If we value the lives of our citizens, we must support our biopharmaceutical industry, not hold it back.
Profit in and of itself is not a bad thing. Profit at the expense of patients – such as when insurance companies restrict access to life-saving drugs and treatments is another story. If Congress wishes to lower medical costs, they should start with health insurers.
We must reject government price controls of pharmaceuticals it truly is a matter of life and death.