In 2013, Americans spent more per capita on pharmaceuticals than Canada, the next-highest.
Some drugs can cost a patient $100,000 a year.
One in five Americans say they have not filled a prescription because of cost.
Generics emerge when the patent on the name-brand drug expires. They save the system $1.5 billion a year. Yet, many patients cannot get them.
The researchers say drug companies use many strategies to delay, prevent, or suppress generics.
---Pay for delay. The patent owner pays the generic company to delay putting the generic on the market.
----The patent holder creates its own generic. This would be OK, except it is often done to threaten the generic company that does not go along with pay to delay.
--Product hopping. The name-brand drug company makes a slightly altered version, maybe with a different tablet or dose, and the patent on that has not expired.
The doctors said they saw leukemia patients (they are blood docs) everyday who could not afford the life-saving meds.
Well, this sucks.