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From The Socialist newspaper, 30 September 2015

Gouging boss demands 5,000% price hike for life-saving drug

Michael Wrack, NHS healthcare assistant

Ordinary people were shocked and disgusted by a gouging capitalist's sudden 5,000% increase in the price of a life-saving drug last month.

'Daraprim' is used to treat the parasitic blood disease toxoplasmosis. Infection is life threatening for those with weakened immune systems.

Newborns

This includes Aids patients, newborns and unborn children whose mothers are infected. Also cancer patients who have undergone chemotherapy, and people recovering from organ transplant.

Most of us would have nothing but empathy for people in such situations. But Martin Shkreli, chief executive of Turing Pharmaceuticals, seems only to care how he can profit from their misery.

His firm bought the rights to produce and distribute Daraprim. Shkreli then immediately raised the cost from $13.50 per pill - to $750.

Under any logical system this would be seen as the action of a sociopath. But under the rules of capitalism, Shkreli is a successful businessman!

Outrageous

Outrageously, he has said any drop in the new price will be paid for by cuts to research funding and jobs.

The past few years have seen steep rises in the cost of many drugs. This includes some used to treat tuberculosis, heart disease, and hepatitis C.

And Britain is no exception. 'Dasatinib', used to treat leukaemia, is sold to the NHS at 100 times as much as it costs to make.

The Socialist Party says: nationalise the profiteering drugs companies. Kick all privatisers out of the NHS. For a fully funded and integrated, publicly owned, free health service for all.

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The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

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In The Socialist 30 September 2015:


Socialist Party news and analysis

TUSC: Central in the battle for a working class anti-austerity voice

Socialism is back!

Free school meals cut as poor children go hungry

Pollution cheat Volkswagen kills thousands for profit

Gouging boss demands price hike for life-saving drug

Gravy-train Labour MP claims expenses to rent house next door

Tower block residents defend homes

Them & Us


Socialist Party features

How can we bring down the Tories?

Lessons from the past: Liverpool City Council 1983-87

Give us the resources to defeat the Tories

Subscribe to a paper by workers, for workers


International socialist news and analysis

EU ministers squabble while refugees drown

Hungary's xenophobic right-wing government

USA: Socialists breaking 'political stagnation'

Kazakhstan: workers solidarity action


Workplace news and analysis

Junior doctors fight government attacks

Nominate Roger Bannister for Unison general secretary

Hypocritical attacks on tube control room strike

Review: Kill the Bill

Workplace news in brief


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Anger and protest against fire service cuts in Leicestershire

Come to Socialism 2015


 

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