Drug Company ‘Exploited’ Opioid Epidemic, Raised Cost of Overdose Drug 600%: Report
WASHINGTON (Sinclair Broadcast Group) — While the number of people overdosing on opioids was increasing, so was the cost of a life-saving overdose reversal drug.
A new bipartisan Senate report released Sunday found that the drug company Kaleo Inc. raised the cost of its brand-name naloxone drug more than 600 percent at the height of the opioid crisis. The life-saving drug, Evzio, was brought to market in 2014 for $575 per unit and it is currently priced at $4,100 for two auto-injectors and a training device that provides step-by-step instructions for use.
“Whether it’s the pharmaceutical industry, the marketing of Oxycontin or the marketing of this medication, American greed never ceases to amaze me,” said Dr. Deni Carise, the chief scientific officer at Recovery Centers of America.
While drug companies deserve to be compensated for their research and innovation, it is almost impossible to justify a 600 percent truprice increase over two years, Carise noted. “I think the company should be paid a fair price for the medication. I also think Medicaid and Medicare should claw back the absolutely excessive charges that have been put to the American public.”