For the past several years, progressive politicians here in the
Golden State and around the nation have made it their personal
missions to demonize the pharmaceutical industry and the costs of
prescription drugs. The politicians do this while betraying
absolutely no understanding of the basic economics driving the
industry, an industry not devoid of its share of challenges and
imperfections, but also one with stunning, life-extending and
life-enhancing successes. Unfortunately, the demonizing comes at
the expense of jeopardizing continued successes.
This is not to say that the pharmaceutical industry does not
need sensible regulatory oversight. It does, and, as with any
industry, we shouldn’t hesitate to shine a bright light on and hold
the “bad actors” accountable if they take advantage of the people
they are to serve.
But sometimes, that “bad actor” is the government itself.
Twenty-five years ago, Congress created the so-called 340B drug
discount program. It was a good idea at the time, requiring
pharmaceutical companies to provide discounted outpatient drugs to
clinics and hospitals in areas that serve the uninsured,
underinsured, and… Read More