Written by: Andrew Pollack, journalist.
A more recent Pharma business strategies is to buy old neglected drugs and turning them into high-priced “specialty drugs.”
The high-prices of speciality drugs are often argued as necessary to keep the drugs on the marked, because of a small patient basis and high regulatory expenses.
The rare use of speciality drugs and following the low overall impact on health care budgets, along with the prospect of a huge profit margin for reinvestment in R&D (of more common diseases) is used as justification why the price raises are in fact a favour to society.
Daraprim (Turing): Raised to $750 a tablet from $13.50 a tablet.
Cycloserine (Rodelis): Raised to $10,800 for 30 tablets from $500 for 30 tablets.
Isuprel and Nitropress (Valeant): Raised by 525 percent and 212 percent respectively.
Doxycycline (Mylan): Raised to $1,849 a bottle from $20 a bottle.
Source: Andrew Pollack sep. 20, 2015, New York Times.