[Ip-health] Report: Pharma Profits Are Nearly Double R&D Costs in 2013, 2014 and 2015

Peter Maybarduk pmaybarduk at citizen.org
Mon Mar 27 08:21:39 PDT 2017

For Immediate Release

Public Citizen: Pharmaceutical Industry Profits Are Nearly Double R&D Costs in 2013, 2014 and 2015

As Industry Fights Affordability, Pattern of Profitability Shows Struggling Patients Suffer Needlessly to Satisfy Big Pharma Greed

March 27, 2017

Contact: Don Owens, dowens at citizen.org, (202) 588-7767
Karilyn Gower, kgower at citizen.org, (202) 588-7779

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The 20 largest pharmaceutical corporations collectively profited more than $100 billion each year for three consecutive years (2013 to 2015) while self-reporting spending about half that amount on research and development (R&D) for new medicines, a new Public Citizen report (PDF) released today shows. 

A primary excuse the pharmaceutical industry uses for price gouging is the high cost of R&D these corporations pay in order to bring new medicines to market.

Even the inflated estimates of R&D reported by the industry are dwarfed by the industry’s profits, which, for the 20 largest pharmaceutical companies, jumped from $100.5 billion in 2014 to $123 billion in 2015 – more than 22 percent.

With top companies profiting an average of $5 billion each per year, the industry has ample resources for developing medicines with protections to prevent them from being priced out of reach for the people who need them.

“Big Pharma says that high prices pay for R&D, but it turns out they pay almost twice as much for sky-high corporate profits,” said Robert Weissman, president of Public Citizen. “The pricing system is broken and needs fundamental change.”

Added Peter Maybarduk, director of Public Citizen’s Access to Medicines Program, “Corporations abuse their monopoly power to charge people as much as we will pay to care for our loved ones. Prices are not related to R&D costs. The public puts in $30 billion of our own every year for biomedical research through the taxpayer-funded National Institutes of Health. We deserve affordable medicines in turn.”

Read the report (PDF): http://www.citizen.org/documents/pharma-profits-and-r-and-d-costs-report.pdf


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