Drug producers limiting supply to up prices and profits?
“In some cases, oncologists are creating a triage system whereby the patient who is most likely to be cured will receive the therapy that’s in short supply.”
A simple internet search reveals that current shortage of chemotherapy drugs in Barbados is a worldwide problem with no reasonable explanation forthcoming from the manufacturers or governments. Some say it is a showdown with the US government over manufacturing standards. Some say that the drug makers are playing the trump card of withholding the supplies and killing patients in a deadly political game.
It also is entirely possible that like OPEC, the drug producers have decided to control the supply, lower their costs and thus raise profits. Nevermind the patients.
After all, the relatives of the manufacturers and the elites will always be able to find supplies because they have money. For the majority of us who rely upon our public health systems, there is another reality.
The American College of Surgeons is reporting that doctors are already being forced to determine who will probably live and who will probably die as they ration chemotherapy.
The articles in the Barbados papers don’t say anything about that, but they wouldn’t report that story on this island and that is a fact. (A big part of this story is that Barbados Free Press is publishing an article to inform its readers that THIS TIME the government is telling the truth. That’s a sad commentary on the credibility of the Bajan news media that a blog felt compelled to report that THIS TIME the papers are telling the truth. – Editor.)
I’d love to be an optimist, but I believe we’re going to see more of these scenarios in Barbados and worldwide as governments fail to deliver on their basic job to maintain health, security and stability for the people.
The economy is sick and the bad choices that governments made for decades left the piggy bank empty and the societal infrastructures in need of repair.
In Barbados our elected representatives had their half a billion dollar Cricket World Cup disaster, handed out millions of dollars of lawn cutting equipment to the boys on the block, and threw a billion dollars down a toilet named “Hotels and Resorts, Inc”.
Other governments around the world did their own wasteful things, but at the end of it individuals are learning the truth: You can no longer depend upon government for your health, security and stable communities.
We should better look out for ourselves, our families and our neighbours – because the glue that holds the whole mess together seems to be coming apart.
Our Health Authorities are telling the truth about the chemotherapy drug shortage – but other than ordering the drugs and making a few phone calls, what did they really do over the last few months to avoid what everyone could see coming?
I’m not sure I have any answers, but this has been coming for months. Why was it such a big surprise to everyone in the government and health care system?
January 14, 2011 – American College of Surgeons: Drug Shortages Present Challenges for Oncologists and Their Patients
May 18, 2011 – American Society of Health-System Pharmacists: Paclitaxel Injection
May 18, 2011 – No chemo drug
May 19, 2011 – Lasco: Don’t blame QEH
May 19, 2011 – Drug Relief