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2019-05-25 11:25 by Karl Denninger
in Corruption , 201 references Ignore this thread
Prison. NOW.
[Comments enabled]

We're there folks.

U.S. regulators have approved the most expensive medicine ever, for a rare disorder that destroys a baby’s muscle control and kills nearly all of those with the most common type of the disease within a couple of years.

The treatment is priced at $2.125 million. Out-of-pocket costs for patients will vary based on insurance coverage.

The medicine, sold by the Swiss drugmaker Novartis, is a gene therapy that treats an inherited condition called spinal muscular atrophy. The treatment targets a defective gene that weakens a child’s muscles so dramatically that they become unable to move, and eventually unable to swallow or breathe. It strikes about 400 babies born in the U.S. each year.

The Food and Drug Administration on Friday approved the treatment, called Zolgensma, for all children under age 2 who are confirmed by a genetic test to have any of the three types of the disease. The therapy is a one-time infusion that takes about an hour.

There is exactly no possibility that this drug could exist at that price in any sort of market economy.  In fact without felony level abuses of the law it's flatly impossible for such a price to be charged for this -- or any other -- treatment.

It does not matter if this treatment works or not.  It does not matter if it is an actual cure for a disease.

None of that matters because the laws of economics prohibit this sort of price schedule without multiple felonies, specifically theft at gunpoint via law, being shoved down everyone's throat.

It simply can't happen, and it shouldn't take more than seconds for you to figure it out -- if you haven't been dumbed down to the point of flat-out idiocy.

Simply put unless you can force someone other than the patient and their family to pay for this treatment there are an insufficient number of people who have or can finance a $2.125 million treatment for there to be any market for it.  The odds of you both having a child afflicted with this condition and having $2.125 million you can either pay or finance is statistically indistinguishable from zero.  With a statistically-zero base of potential customers such a price cannot exist since you would sell zero vials of said medication.

The only way such a price can be presented is if a person who suffers from such an affliction can force other people to pay for it.  Since nobody will willingly fork up $2.125 million for someone else's kid if "politely asked" it therefore follows that the only way that sort of price can exist is for the extraction of that money from others to be enforced by law at gunpoint.

The mere presentation of this sort of price schedule is proof of felony violation of the law in the form of grand theft against millions of Americans, a criminal offense sufficient to charge and imprison -- or hang, if you prefer, and I really don't give a damn which any more when it comes to punishment -- every single person involved in designing and enforcing said criminal system.

Period.

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Jal
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Are you hinting that only a rich and powerful person has a kid needing this treatment?
Tickerguy
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No, I'm stating that since STATISTICALLY ZERO rich and powerful people will be the ones with a kid who needs that treatment the only way you can price it at $2.1 million is if you shove a gun up other people's nose and force them to pay for the not-rich person's treatment.

The treatment would NOT cost $2.1 million otherwise, and the structure that makes possible forcing someone else to pay is a criminal, felony racket which must be stopped by whatever means are necessary.

There is literally NO boundary on this crap otherwise and all of it is a felony criminal offense.

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Winding it down.

Mtdm
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And even if there were one (literally, one) suitably rich and powerful person.... were supposed to believe that instead of using their money and power to make more babies which dont have the defect, they would instead wish to perpetuate an heir with such a significant genetic defect.

Its not statistically 0 - Its more like statistically 0.00
Lobo
Posts: 605
Incept: 2013-12-25

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Novartis isn't in business to lose money. They spent money developing Zolgensma and, by taking it to market, tell the world that they expect to make money with it.

The article also points out another illegal activity:
Quote:
Out-of-pocket costs for patients will vary based on insurance coverage.


Also from the article:
Quote:
The independent nonprofit group Institute for Clinical and Economic Review, which rates the value of expensive new medicines, calculated that the price of the new gene therapy is justifiable at a cost of $1.2 million to $2.1 million because it dramatically transforms the lives of families affected by this devastating disease.


Snort. "Dramatically transforms the lives of families..." Yeah, a crushing debt load will do that.

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Village Idiot
Gordonshandling
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So Mr. Lennon (if the Reuters item is accurate) has been lying. He said that a media report suggesting Zolgensma would be priced at $2 million per patient was complete speculation.
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-novar....

The business case based on these prices seems interesting for Novartis (quoting the Reuters article):
Quote:
Zolgensma, which Novartis bought with its $8.7 billion acquisition of U.S.-based AveXis last year, is a key piece of Chief Executive Vas Narasimhans push into treating rare diseases with innovative medicines. SMA affects about one in every 10,000 live births, amounting to up to 500 new cases annually in the United States, 600 in Europe and 50 in Japan.


Yes, based on the assumption that you can shove a gun up other people's nose. In my own country (The Netherlands, EU) the medicine still needs to be approved by the National Health Care Institute (NZA).

Reason: Used quotation brackets
Doctor.d
Posts: 34
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Yeah, but they can make payments over 5 years! And partial rebate if it doesn't work (ie - baby dies anyway). ROFLMAO!

This may actually be the most ludicrous thing I've ever ****ing seen in my life! **** Prison - these mother****ing people should be DRAWN AND QUARTERED!

Quote:
Novartis said it will let insurers make payments over five years, at $425,000 per year, and will give partial rebates if the treatment doesnt work.


And another thing - have you ever heard of this supposed 'disease'??? The reality is, those babies are just supposed to ****ing die. Sad, but true. They aren't cut out to survive and that's the way it works out sometimes.

It's simply Darwinism, quite frankly!
Crossthread
Posts: 6531
Incept: 2007-09-04

Wilmington, NC
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Karl, a travesty honestly..
WHAT IF you're just poor, you will never hear about this..
If you're "semi-rich" consider debt slavery.. Because, that what it is.. To save you're Kid.. Or.. just let evolution take it's course..

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Cognitive Co-Dependency is when a normal rational person, internalizes irrational illogical presentations, and somehow reconciles them to fit their scripted indoctrination of logical analysis.
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Tickerguy
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It's not a travesty it's a ****ing cadre of felonies and I'm tired of it.

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Winding it down.
Emupaul
Posts: 40
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Nice of them to let you make payments. Plus interest, too, I'd bet.

Like Mtdm said above, just make another baby. "Oh, the stretch marks!" Harvest a few eggs and hire a few surrogate wombs.
Snooze
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florida
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I wonder if the treatment will prevent this genetic defect from being passed on to future progeny. If not, not only is it economically corrupt; it is morally corrupt to proliferate this defect for monetary gain.
Tickerguy
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Of course it doesn't.

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Goforbroke
Posts: 7546
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The tadpole and I are hunkering down.
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Off topic but related ...

Yesterday, I filed a formal complaint with the Colorado AG's office about a deceptive medical billing practice. My daughter was billed/held accountable for a $2700 bill (full Chargemaster) for some blood tests when the provider had a contract with the insurance company (repriced amount of $130 ... not a typo), but the insurance company denied the claim because it's a major medical policy which doesn't pay for outpatient visits/tests, I had an accident rider, and they determined that the bloodwork was not the result of an accident.

So it's not balance billing (which, by the way, is fully legal in 34 states), it's just greed and "let's see what we can get away with" on the part of the provider, and everyone looks the other way.

We'll see where it goes.

Edit: Oh, and the insurance policy is indeed ACA-compliant. Ha.

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Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our Light, and not our Darkness, that most frightens us. -- Marianne Williamson

Tickerguy
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I might be tempted to go postal over a 20x gouging attempt.

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Winding it down.
Goforbroke
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The tadpole and I are hunkering down.
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Tell me about it.

I have hard copy proof in the bills and the EOB.

Plus the fact that after I pushed back over the phone and in email they offered her/me roughly $550 for "being self-insured." (Got that in writing from the provider, too.)

My daughter was not self-insured. She had insurance. The provider had a contract with the insurance company (hence, not a balance billing issue for an out-of-network provider). The insurance company merely denied the claim.

Like I said, this will be interesting.

Any bets on what will happen?

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Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our Light, and not our Darkness, that most frightens us. -- Marianne Williamson

Doctor.d
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People need to start going postal. Why the **** aren't they? The time for being nice has long past! In all seriousness, why do people keep getting up and going to work when it's obvious almost everything is a scam!

ENOUGH!
Wifi
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Prison is too good for these ****ers, lead poisoning should be administered at 3300 fps.

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James56287
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I've got a friend whose husband is in the business of consulting with these pharma companies to help set the prices of drugs like this. Business is good for him, like penthouse apartment on Park Avenue good.

The way he explained it to me, they're essentially trying to actuarially determine the value of the life they saved, in the case of a medecine like this, and set the price at or near that value. Any surprise that 2.1M is about 40 years of the average person's earnings? The logic would be, if the baby was going to die, might as well price it at their economic value over their life. The limited competition and other factors pointed out here before certainly play into their ability to price like this as well. What a scam.
Raftermanfmj
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Had to sort my password and login for this.

I was dismissed from my job after 20 years in April and went to see my PCP before I lost my insurance.

I asked the man what his cash price was to see him when I had no insurance and he mumbled about the law, about regs, about billing ... and didn't give me an answer.

Apparently, there is no cash price.

So I guess have insurance or******off no matter how much cash ye have.

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Tickerguy
Posts: 157529
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@James56287 -
Quote:
I've got a friend whose husband is in the business of consulting with these pharma companies to help set the prices of drugs like this. Business is good for him, like penthouse apartment on Park Avenue good.

The way he explained it to me, they're essentially trying to actuarially determine the value of the life they saved, in the case of a medecine like this, and set the price at or near that value. Any surprise that 2.1M is about 40 years of the average person's earnings? The logic would be, if the baby was going to die, might as well price it at their economic value over their life. The limited competition and other factors pointed out here before certainly play into their ability to price like this as well. What a scam.

Yep.

And the existence of this as a pricing mechanism is proof of multiple collusive felonies - that is, Racketeering -- by everyone involved.

Why?

Because in a market economy the upper boundary of any product or service is the marginal utility of that good or service. That sounds like justification for such a pricing mechanism but it in fact is not; it's the opposite when that marginal utility value is calculated on some sort of actuarial basis related to someone's life.

Why?

Because nobody will ever willingly forfeit the entirety, or any material percentage -- such as half or more -- if the actuarial value of their own life. Further, NO PERSON can do so to ANOTHER person's life, so in the context of a minor THERE IS NO WAY TO ATTACH SAID PERSON'S ACTUARIAL VALUE since the person in question is legally incompetent.

Period.

Such a demand, were it to be made on the individual involved, is factual slavery, which is unconstitutional -- and therefore won't be made.

INSTEAD the conspiracy is to STEAL the actuarial value of that life FROM OTHER PEOPLE. That's flat-out Racketeering, extortion and felony armed robbery and the result of it should be exactly identical to what you'd do to ANYONE ELSE who attempted the same criminal offense.

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Winding it down.
Asimov
Posts: 111324
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Quote:
People need to start going postal. Why the **** aren't they?


Oh, they do. All the time. Lots and lots of them in the news all the time. You just never know their reasons because even if they leave a clear accounting of them, it will be scrubbed from the internet and only referenced by the msm in the most oblique ways.

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It's justifiably immoral to deal morally with an immoral entity.

Festina lente.
Mtdm
Posts: 661
Incept: 2009-07-23

NH
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Whats more, if they actually are basing it on the actuarial value of the life... if an average educated and ready for work 20 year old is worth $2MM or so, then an infant who has not yet (had the investment made for them to have) been weaned, raised, educated etc. should be far far less... perhaps 10% of that?
Oliver1655
Posts: 155
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Just like those ****ing GoodRX commercials.
Lady gets flashed a price of 60 some bucks for a prescription.
Says wait a minute, diddles around with the GoodRx app on her phone and magically it's 8$ and she is all happy.

Meanwhile I am yelling and screaming that's a textbook case of a 15 USC violation and a Robinson Patman Act violation.

In short, you cannot discriminate on what price will be charged to different people (insurance vs paying cash) for the same product, in the same amounts, at the same location.

She ought to be calling her state AG and demanding an investigation and prosecution of the pharmacy. Instead, she is happy she did not get gouged but******on the next unlucky person walking in the door.


Where are the damn handcuffs ?
Where are the corrupt bought and paid for AG's ?
Where is the anger at the financial******going on ?

Nothing but extortion's and extractions every ****ing direction you turn.



Inline
Skizo
Posts: 4
Incept: 2014-03-30

Denmark
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First of, I truly believe that this treatment and Nusinersen both have a immoral pricing.

That said, the people diagnosed with muscular dystrophy, do have lives, and some of them long lives.

And here comes the problem, a person diagnosed with muscular dystrophy will need 24/7 help from around age 10 (+-3 years) and for the rest of their lives, and sometimes that is a long time (Evald Krog who lives near me is 75 years old and still alive) source: https://da.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evald_Krog

Now that help also has a cost, and large cost. This cost obviously depends on where in the world you live, here its easily $180K/year in salary for the people helping the person, on top of that comes all the expense to additional health care and whatnot.

So yes, the pricing is deeply immoral. And there is no doubt that they did the math, and came to the conclusion that most states / insurance companies will pay the price, and so avoid the cost of supporting people for many years.

I don't see an easy solution for this.
Xkn
Posts: 67
Incept: 2011-04-30

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Why not fix it american way --- financialize! So, families with sick child can take a loan. Of course, one which cannot discharged in bankruptcy, otherwise we could hurt "innovation". It has been tried on education and it works, why not on healthcare. To "lessen" the burden on families, let's go multi-generational 60 year fixed (no playing tricks here, you see, all legit) loan. Lessee... some "reasonable" interest rate of say 7%. Problem solved!

But seriously folks, if this ailment happens to your child, simply look to any country which does not have socialized medicine, and you will get instant price discovery (remember Sovaldi, $90k in US, $3k in India). Oh yes, Novartis will be selling it all over the world, not only in US/EU/Jpn there is 0 doubt about that. Certainly in China and India.
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