What Capitalism is Not (Medically)

We have seen it pop up in the news occasionally. Stories of horrible CEOs and other companies who drive up the prices of specific “cures” or other medical miracles to prices that only the top 5% can afford.

While speaking about these particular incidents (epipen, AIDs drug scandals, etc) with my father (man in his late 60s with a bachelor’s in electrical engineering and a master’s in public administration), he made the argument that “well, that’s capitalism, what they did isn’t a crime.” This, I couldn’t help but sigh at. The reason? While it is true, it’s not illegal to raise drug prices, it is illegal to kill a man. Yes, they’re not actually holding a gun to their head, but metaphorically, they are.

People like myself, who require medication on a daily basis to be an actually functioning adult in today’s society, need medication to help balance their body chemistry. If my thyroid medication suddenly became $900+ dollars a month, I would probably break out into hysterical crying. To put this into perspective for an average person: if Tylenol, and/or some other common pain killer (or cold medicine) suddenly had a gargantuan price jump, the public would rightfully be screaming for change.

This is why we need price caps on medicine. I am totally ok with companies competing with each other. What I am not okay with, is inadvertently killing your patients, because they can not afford medication.

I’m a queer adopted healthcare worker who writers in their spare time. I have a MPH degree.

I’m a queer adopted healthcare worker who writers in their spare time. I have a MPH degree.