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Home Publications Blogs Beat the Press Steve Rattner Documents How Patents Lead to Cesspool of Corruption in Pharmaceutical Industry

Steve Rattner Documents How Patents Lead to Cesspool of Corruption in Pharmaceutical Industry

Monday, 01 July 2013 04:33

Rattner shows how a small drug company, Jazz Pharmaceuticals, is making a fortune by charging as much as $60,000 a year for a drug it purchased which is a treatment for narcolepsy. As Rattner outlines, government-granted patent monopolies, by allowing companies to charge prices that can be several hundred or thousand times the free market price, provide an enormous incentive for corrupt practices.

Comments (3)Add Comment
Moral Hazard on Steroids: No Price Too High to Pay to Get Some Sleep
written by Last Mover, July 01, 2013 6:06

Rattner says:
Central to Jazz’s pricing strategy, moreover, has been the willingness of insurance companies to reimburse the cost of Xyrem, even when physicians prescribe the drug for other ailments (like insomnia), as they are permitted to do. Nearly every patient gets the drug pretty cheaply — Jazz subsidizes co-payments above $35 per month — so few users care what Jazz charges.

This is exactly what right wing crazies go apoplectic about on government interference in "free markets" for just about anything in the name of moral hazard - getting something for free because a third party like the government or insurer pays for it.

Then after throwing the standard required tantrum in public, they scurry back into their hidey-hole privatized bunkers hardened with layers of socialized regulations so thick designed to protect them from competition, not even a nuclear bunker-buster bomb could get to them.

Have you no shame America, they will say. After all we're talking about health care. How dare you liberals put a death-panel price cap on life based on economic cost. We're talking about markets here.
Don't beclown yourself, CEPR - Ratner and Scandal
written by cas127, July 02, 2013 1:33
Any post that mentions Ratner and scandal in the same breath, and doesn't mention the $6 million fine that Ratner paid for his involvement in the NY pension fund kickback scandal...is a joke.

Google it.

What is the deal, CEPR? Is Ratner a contributor trying to buy a rehab'ed reputation?

Should we discuss the issues involved in Ratner's involvement in the legally dubious re-ordering of creditor priority in the auto bailouts?

Google it.

Ratner is a powerful, shady character who acts in the dark corners of democratic politics when the Left needs an ethically questionable "fixer".

This is the person you choose to make your points about pharma?

The internet, Google, and Wikipedia exist CEPR...the same old lazy hackery doesn't fly anymore.

Internet, CEPR, internet.
written by NWsteve, July 04, 2013 10:55
but killing-the-messenger does very little, if anything at all, to refute the message...

or to expand the conversation about this message...


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About Beat the Press

Dean Baker is co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research in Washington, D.C. He is the author of several books, his latest being The End of Loser Liberalism: Making Markets Progressive. Read more about Dean.