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February 6, 2003

Answering Critics of Pharmaceutical Patents


Of all the recent criticisms leveled at the prescription drug industry, the one that has resonated most is that drug companies are gaming the patent system. However, the Hatch-Waxman Act that governs the role between generics and brand name drugs is very complicated, and it has ultimately weakened intellectual property protections. It is naive to assume that branded companies are sidestepping the rules while generics always play fair.

January 9, 2003

Why Differential Pricing Helps the Poor


By making a product available at several price points, differential pricing allows many more consumers access to the product—especially lower-income consumers. Requiring producers and vendors to sell their products, such as prescription drugs, at a single global price. (i.e., price controls) would not make drugs available at low prices; it would drive the price higher and deprive low-income consumers and nations of access to those products.
January 9, 2003

Prescription Drug Advertising: Problem or Solution?


Almost every sector of the economy advertises as a way of getting critical product information to customers. The utility of advertising is widely recognized—except in the case of pharmaceutical advertising, which is blamed for increasing health care costs, intruding on the doctor’s authority, and misleading consumers. But after examining these charges, it is clear that prescription drug advertising isn’t the problem—it’s the solution.
January 9, 2003

Prescription Drug Prices and Profits


The pharmaceutical industry is under political attack for being “too profitable,” for drug prices that are “too high,” for paying their CEOs “too much,” and for “profiting from pain.” Yet, when compared to other industries, it becomes clear that the pharmaceutical industry makes a compelling, socially-beneficial product, and performs within reason for an industry that takes enormous financial risks.
September 9, 2002

Upsetting the Balance in Prescription Drugs Senate Bill Unconstitutionally Undermines Drug Company Patents


The government can take countless steps to reduce the costs of health care. However, confiscation by a hair-trigger statute of limitations and onerous registration provisions should not be among them.

September 9, 2002

From Inception to Ingestion:The Cost of Creating New Drugs


The pharmaceutical industry cites studies that suggest it costs more than $800 million to move a new drug through the 10-to-12 year discovery, development and approval process. However, critics claim those estimates are artificially inflated and that the actual costs are much lower. For example, Ralph Nader’s Public Citizen released a study last year claiming that the cost of creating a new drug is only about $110 million (in 2000 dollars). And that includes the cost of failures.

September 9, 2002

Is there a "Good" Monopoly?


Some forms of monopoly power are not the products of corporate giants trying to eliminate competition, but are granted by the federal government to achieve a social good for society as a whole. That is the case with patents, under which the federal government grants to inventors an exclusive right to make and sell a product or process as a reward to induce and encourage their creative efforts.

August 28, 2002

Why Intellectual Property is Important


Although people often can get free use of someone’s intellectual property, that doesn’t make it right—or legal. Does it really hurt anyone? Is intellectual property really all that important?

June 21, 2002

Patent Protection for Me, But Not for You


Groups such as Business for Affordable Medicine (BAM) wants to reform the 1984 Hatch-Waxman Act in order to get access sooner to cheaper generic drugs. However, those efforts could weaken drug manufacturers’ patents. Interestingly, BAM members also have patents, and they defend those patents if another company tries to infringe them. In particular, GM complains that it has to spend money fighting the expansion of imitation parts — just like the drug manufacturers. Is the intellectual property of pharmaceutical companies less important than the intellectual property of member companies of Business for Affordable Medicine?

April 2, 2002

Stock Options and the Levin-McCain Double Standard


From Congress Daily (4/5):
". . . a sharp critique of a bill offered by Sens. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Carl Levin, D-Mich., concerning corporate obligations to report stock options on tax returns. The bill is designed to make sure a company's earnings reports match tax deductions it claims to the IRS. But a paper written by analyst Alan Reynolds contends the bill would violate the principle that income should not be taxed twice. He explained that employee taxes are based on the actual earnings from stock options. Employers, on the other hand, would be forced to base deductions on the estimated value of stock options, years in advance. He challenged what he described as Levin's assertion that the costs of stock options never actually show up on a company's earnings report under current law."

 

Total Records: 77

 

 

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