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Next Administration Should Work To Reform How U.S. Pays For Medical R&D

New York Times: The U.S. Is Standing in the Way of Cheaper Drugs for the Poor
Jason Cone, executive director of Doctors Without Borders USA, and Raymond C. Offenheiser, president of Oxfam America

“…High prices and monopolies are not delivering innovation that responds to people’s needs. In fact, many public health issues are being neglected by the pharmaceutical industry because the market for the needed medicines is not sufficiently profitable. … There are alternative means to stimulate innovation that do not rely on monopolies and high prices. Grants, prizes, and other research incentives could go a long way. … [I]t is possible to separate the cost of developing drugs from their final product price, ensuring both innovation and affordability. Yet to really transform how drugs are developed, governments must lead the charge. … The United States government, especially the next president, must stop defending industry profits and work to reform how we pay for medical research to ensure that all patients’ needs are addressed. High prices of medicines are not inevitable; they are a choice the American government has made. Many lives and livelihoods hang in the balance until that choice changes” (10/27).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.