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Cancer Medication Cost Hike Makes Patients Struggle With Treatment

May 04, 2016 11:30 AM EDT
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World Health Organisation report finds poor countries plagued with fake drugs

The dramatic increase in the price of cancer medicine has recently been bringing struggles to cancer patients; majority of which cling mainly to these drugs for survival.

Studies published on Jama Oncology and Health Affairs resulted in one common concern. The difference between the prices of cancer drugs seems alarming, as it has increased rapidly from the average monthly cancer drug expense of $2000 in the year 2000 to $11,325 in year 2014.

"A lot of times, I've heard manufacturers say we can only give the drug to 1,000 patients; we need a high price to recoup costs of research and development. Then all of a sudden, they're able to sell it to 10,000 patients. You'd think it [the costs] would be distributed across all patients and be cheaper. I think the argument that they're trying to recoup the research and development over 1,000 patients is not actually representative of what's going on," said Caroline Bennette, University of Washington, Seattle Health Economist and study leader of the Health Affairs, according to Washington Post.

As The Daily Croton reported, Chemotherapy, a much expensive way of combating cancer has been very impossible for some cancer patients to afford especially for those who do not have the privilege of insurance plans.

That is why the discovery and introduction of orally administered cancer drugs have become more popular and has increased demands in hospitals, resulting in the launching of 32 more therapies.

Not only did they find these medicines with much less stressful effects than chemotherapy, but for most of them, finding an alternative which will be within their reach financially means a clearer hope of defeating cancer.

However with the price which seemed to increase six times its original price in a little more than a decade is little by little bringing their hope of victory down, as per Maine News Online.

Stacie Dusetzina, assistant professor in the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy, UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health and UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center said that the major argument here is that cancer medicines are getting higher as time goes by in spite of the growing population of consumers.

Researchers believe that the way this drug prices are moving is based on an economic concept of the law of supply and demand.

Watch this video for more of the story.

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