The story of Martin Shkreli has been all of the news in the past couple weeks. He’s known as the Pharmaceutical, “Bad Boy”. Seeing as we discussed pharmaceuticals, cosmeceuticals and nutraceuticals the past week; this would be a perfect topic.
So who is Martin Shkreli? He was the form Chief Executive of Turing Pharmaceuticals and recently had bumped up the price of one of their life-saving drugs by 5,000%. That’s right, FIVE THOUSAND PERCENT. The drug itself Daraprim, that is commonly used to treat malarial illnesses went from the price of $13.50, to an unbelievable $750. This happened when his company bought the drug last summer and quickly bumped up the price. This left tons of people without the money to finance the life-saving drugs and basically out of luck.
The headlines were really made after he was arrested and brought before the House Oversight Committee. He was asked questions whether or not he feels bad about bumping up the prices of these drugs that people need so much. He was even asked what he would say to a dying woman who cannot afford the drug and seemingly will die in the near future. His reply? A smirk on his face and pleading to his fifth amendment right. To top it all off, after the hearing, he blatantly insulted congress on twitter. His tweet read, “Hard to accept that these imbeciles represent the people in our government”. http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-congress-shkreli-twitter-idUSKCN0VD244
It became clear that he really doesn’t care about how this price bump actually affects other people. What was on his mind? Money.
It’s sad to see how one man can basically turn thousands and many more away from the drugs that they need to survive. He was greedy and wanted the monetary gain. Someone in the court told him that he could be the one to save thousands of lives and he laughed. People aren’t just going to stop needing this medicine, and with the recent price bump, I’m scared to see what happens. After all, this is just one example of how pharmaceutical companies have such a grip on our economy.