Pyrimethamine. Or as it’s known in the market, Daraprim. It’s a medicine that was developed 40 years ago and is used to treat toxoplasmosis.
That’s a disease that’s not too common, but can be fatal for newborns and mothers who suffer from AIDS, cancer patients and anyone who has a compromised immune system. Basically, Daraprim is the thing keeping these people alive.
Now for most people that would qualify it to be cheap and affordable, but Martin Shkreli isn’t most people.
For those not in the know, Martin Shkreli’s company just acquired the rights to the drug and immediately raised the price to $750 a tablet from a mere $13.50 overnight.
That’s an incredible 5500% jump in the price of a single tablet! What makes it worse is that Daraprim is on the World Health Organisation’s List Of Essential Medicines.
When he was asked about this, Martin Shkreli responded to Bloomberg saying,”We need to turn a profit on the drug.”
As if determined to seal the deal on his newly-acquired title of Supreme Douchebag Of The World, he went on to say he believed it was “still under priced, compared to its peers.”
According to the Daily Mail and Bloomberg, the drug costs only $1 to manufacture. Since his announcement, people across the Internet have registered their anger at the price increase, but Shkerli seems unfazed.
According to health experts, the price increase may force hospitals to use less than efficient therapies that are cheaper.
As of now, it’s hard to say how this will affect the drug’s pricing in India, but basically this is the perfect example how a free market without the proper checks in place can run roughshod over the needs of the less than privileged.