PETER ROST: PHARMA MARKETING EXPERT WITNESS. AWP, MEDICAL DEVICE EXPERT.: Drug reimportation is back in the news: It should happen. But it won't.

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Drug reimportation is back in the news: It should happen. But it won't.

Drug reimportation is back in the headlines.

What brought this issue back to life was the introduction this week of two identical bills in the House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate to legalize importation of less expensive prescription drugs into the United States.

The fight for affordable drugs in the U.S., where uninsured patients pay the highest prices in the world, has gone on for a long time, with very little result.

A 2004 study by the U.S. Congressional Budget Office found that comparable drugs sold for 35 to 55 per cent less in Canada than in the U.S. The only ones benefiting from this situation have been the drug companies, and Canadian Internet pharmacies, which supply drugs to about three million Americans.

The proposed legislation would allow U.S. licensed pharmacies and wholesalers to import medications from Canada, Europe, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand.

Is it going to happen?

I doubt it.

Last time I was involved with this issue Senator Dorgan told me it was definitely going to happen. It didn't.

What is different this time around is that Democrats are now controlling both Houses, so the legislation stands a better chance of being passed.

What is not different is that to become law, the new legislation must be approved by President Bush, and he's made it very clear that he will not sign such legislation.

The issue seems like a no-brainer. But too many people in our government are paid off and will not allow this to happen, no matter how many uninsured Americans are suffering.

There is, however, some hope: Another presidential election is around the corner.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm obviously missing why re-importation cannot occur. Corporations may search worldwide for locations, materials and labour pools. Yet, individual consumers are not allowed to exercise the same type of economic freedom in order to maintain their own economic viability. Perhaps the "good politicians" can explain why free trade (and "incentives" such as the Purto Rican tax package given to Pharma several years ago...) is only applicable to corporations and not individuals or other "lesser groups".

Anonymous xbpg said...

There are lot of good people in USA but the "content majority" rules in such a way that they are manipulated and brainwashed by the elite, your own evildoers. This majority is given just enough of everything to be and keep content, so no major uphival would ever happen. The rest are ignored, exploited and so on. it is not that content majority is not exploited and abused, but the balance is such, again that they do feel content to the extent that would not change the system that gives them what they (think) they want and deserve.
Anon one, yout questions are decent and justified, but you are fogeting one major thing, you live in a hard core capitalism, the dog eat dog type and the elite and establishement is your boss. You and the rest of us exsist to serve their purpose not other way around as you would like to. The big pharma think we are here for them not other way around and this will not change without some major action, velvet we hope.


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