Gilead discounts Sovaldi 99% for Egypt


Gilead (GILD) CEO John Martin's job convincing US legislators that Sovaldi's $84,000 domestic price is fair and reasonable just got a lot harder. It plans to sell the product to Egypt for $300/one-month box or $900 for a full three-month regimen.

Egypt has the world's highest prevalence of Hepatitis C due to the use of poorly sterilized needles in its decades-long campaign to eradicate schistosomiasis.

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Comments (22)
  • WhitneyB
    , contributor
    Comments (892) | Send Message
     
    Looks like there will be a lot of "Hep C tourism" to Cairo soon; see the pyramids, save $83,000 on your treatment.
    21 Mar 2014, 04:47 PM Reply Like
  • Hamdy Sadek
    , contributor
    Comments (221) | Send Message
     
    You are right, sight seeing and treatment. Egypt has about 10 Mil people with Hep C, most are poor that receive a government subsidized treatment but most of them die shortly later because of liver failure or inability to buy the drugs. I guess Egypt, India, and other poor countries are large markets for GILD Hep C medications.
    21 Mar 2014, 05:57 PM Reply Like
  • dr_yaserfayed@yahoo.com
    , contributor
    Comment (1) | Send Message
     
    Is that social or political issues
    21 Mar 2014, 06:52 PM Reply Like
  • greenstocks
    , contributor
    Comments (3) | Send Message
     
    I'm not sure if that will make it harder for Gilead to justify their price, since the cost of a liver transplant costs much more than simply curing Hep C with Sovaldi. It might bring up the question of whether healthcare costs (across the board) are too high-priced in America.

     

    If it's determined that the current cost of a liver transplant in America is fair, then I don't see how it can be argued that Sovaldi should be cheaper.
    21 Mar 2014, 06:52 PM Reply Like
  • Zeus2012
    , contributor
    Comments (714) | Send Message
     
    There's got to be a happy medium. Forget Egypt & India. Why are American paying significant higher prices relative to what $GILD charge in Europe, UK & Canada? Or Japan for that matter. That's the question that $GILD must answer. It's not like those countries are indigent.
    21 Mar 2014, 06:53 PM Reply Like
  • Agent 59
    , contributor
    Comments (16) | Send Message
     
    WhitneyB, maybe so but without mentioning any names, certain specialty pharmacies are able to negotiate very reasonable copays for patients who have solid health insurance.
    21 Mar 2014, 06:55 PM Reply Like
  • Stealthe
    , contributor
    Comments (85) | Send Message
     
    Am pretty sure Internet pharmacies will be addressing the market soon unless they have some novel ways to prevent that from happening. So then, the true price is between 300 and 84k.
    21 Mar 2014, 09:29 PM Reply Like
  • Margaret Dudley
    , contributor
    Comments (6) | Send Message
     
    Perhaps the internet will become the new 'Dallas Buyers Club'. Just saying...
    21 Mar 2014, 10:57 PM Reply Like
  • jpbald
    , contributor
    Comments (37) | Send Message
     
    99% cheaper in Egypt? I will have to reconsider my ownership of there stock. Price gouging americans to give discounts to other countries doesn't seem right. If am going to make money from a stock I can't feel okay with owning, I would swap Gilead for Philip Morris & collect a good dividend {with increases like clockwork}too.
    22 Mar 2014, 06:02 AM Reply Like
  • Qniform
    , contributor
    Comments (4494) | Send Message
     
    jpbald, you said, "Price gouging americans to give discounts to other countries DOESN'T SEEM RIGHT."

     

    The headline summary said, "John Martin's job convincing US legislators that Sovaldi's $84,000 domestic price is FAIR AND REASONABLE..."

     

    (emphasis added to both quotes)

     

    Both statements reveal an attitude that it is ethical to seize another's property because you don't like what they do with it. Make no mistake, dictating a pricing policy is a seizure. You just better hope that you don't have anything somebody else wants...
    23 Mar 2014, 12:07 PM Reply Like
  • Zeus2012
    , contributor
    Comments (714) | Send Message
     
    Price policy is seizure?! LMAO. While comparing to Egypt or India is a bit sensational, the real question is why Americans are paying more than the citizens of other wealth countries such as those in the EU, Canada, Japan, etc. That's the question that $GILD and other biotech / pharmas should be answering. The additional cost is effectively being absorbed by the taxpayers given Medicare / Medicaid & now Obamacare.
    23 Mar 2014, 10:07 PM Reply Like
  • Qniform
    , contributor
    Comments (4494) | Send Message
     
    Dictating limitations on property use has long been understood to be seizure.

     

    "A seizure of property occurs when there is 'some meaningful interference with an individual's possessory interests in that property.'" [Jacobsen, 466 U.S. at 113]. It's a classic 4th amendment issue. But heck, it's just the Constitution.

     

    Anyway, it certainly is a seizure. If I capped the sale price of your home below what you want to get, and what willing buyers would pay, you would get that message in a hurry. Better yet, since GILD is so nasty, how about we simply make it illegal to trade their stock? You own it don't you? Should you have to answer questions why, or be subject to questions about how much you sell it for?

     

    Also, you assume a requirement for the company to answer questions at all by saying, "That's the question that $GILD and other biotech / pharmas should be answering." How about buy or don't buy as an answer? That communication is the most meaningful to a corporation
    23 Mar 2014, 11:31 PM Reply Like
  • Zeus2012
    , contributor
    Comments (714) | Send Message
     
    LMAO. A bit of an extremist aren't we? Either that or you're up to your eyeball long this name.

     

    We cap rates utilities & bank can charge. Don't see many people complaining about it (aside from your typical right wing nutjobs). Better yet, Medicare & Medicaid should simply cap reimbursement rate on these drugs & those who wish can either travel to India or pay the difference. Irony is that Obamacare has been the biggest boon to the medical industry - additional customers without any cap on cost via a single payer strategy.
    24 Mar 2014, 07:43 AM Reply Like
  • Qniform
    , contributor
    Comments (4494) | Send Message
     
    You must be running out of arse. Anyway, I guess we're both extreme. You in your comparison of an R&D biotech with utilities and banks (astounding), and me in my desire for freedom. But since your rhetoric indicates an inability both to have a dispassionate discussion and be apolitical, I'll leave it at that. Good luck to you.

     

    BTW, I'm short GILD puts.
    24 Mar 2014, 10:12 AM Reply Like
  • rocksaregood
    , contributor
    Comments (4) | Send Message
     
    Let Congress justify their reckless waste of our tax dollars in giving money to Egypt and other countries. At least GILD is making a few bucks from the deal.
    22 Mar 2014, 12:29 PM Reply Like
  • Tricia D
    , contributor
    Comments (20) | Send Message
     
    I was angry when I first learned this Friiday and wanted to smack Martin for terrible timing - Today I learned that Dr. Schinazi, Egyptian born scientist who worked for Pharmesset, (VRUS) is the father of Sofasbuvir .... I am still trying to find out if this was contractual or a courtesy.

     

    Egypt has a population of 80 million and the highest prevalence of hepatitis C in the world. HCV antibody positivity has been est to be 12-14% with nearly 500,000 new cases every year. (Genotype 4 is 90%of all HCV cases in Egypt)

     

    In the mid 70"s Egypt attempted to eradicate schistosomiasis- a common parasitic disease in Egypt acquired through swimming or wading in contaminated irrigation channels or standing water,

     

    The the attempt to eradicate it with old fashioned glass syringes which were reused and probabluy not sterilized properly if at all actually spread HCV
    Thus it was poor and rural farmers who suffered the most ... and HCV is spread among the people who are uniformed and or illiterate.

     

    I can understand this pricing if an agreement was made. I just wish CEO Martin had been open about the price adjustment ..
    23 Mar 2014, 09:31 PM Reply Like
  • Hamdy Sadek
    , contributor
    Comments (221) | Send Message
     
    I agree with your opinion, although I did not know about Dr. Schinazi. However there are regional pricing systems for most pharmaceutical products around the globe and especially for life saving prescription drugs. I worked several year at Novartis (Swiss) and they had different pricing agreements for different regions, they of course consider market consumption, competition, GDP and drug affordability. Novartis is producing and selling their prescription drugs in Egypt for less that 10% of the drug prices in Switzerland. I am sure the Germans don't get very upset because BMW is selling their cars in the US market cheaper than in Germany.
    23 Mar 2014, 09:52 PM Reply Like
  • Teriee
    , contributor
    Comments (109) | Send Message
     
    Where's the CEO ....hiding in his ivory tower? Shareholders had BETTER get an explanation of this behavior...oh forget it...I'm out of this stock...good luck all
    28 Mar 2014, 10:30 AM Reply Like
  • Qniform
    , contributor
    Comments (4494) | Send Message
     
    "I'm out of this stock..." This is a perfectly reasonable decision.

     

    "Shareholders had BETTER get an explanation of this behavior..." This is a simplistic and probably unattainable expectation. Like most companies in many markets worldwide, GILD's strategies are based on average selling price. Deal with it, or just sell. Introducing "fairness" considerations is outside the investment case unless you think there is actual political risk (not jawboning).
    28 Mar 2014, 01:40 PM Reply Like
  • AbleBaker
    , contributor
    Comments (61) | Send Message
     
    This could be a charity program. Many drug companies set up industry groups to make their expensive drugs available to qualifying, needy patients. I'd like to see more details before dumping GILD, like what quantities of Sovaldi is actually being sold to Egypt, and who are they selling to.
    11 Jul 2014, 10:23 AM Reply Like
  • anilizer1
    , contributor
    Comments (3) | Send Message
     
    Comparing Egypt and the US is like comparing 180th and Pak Ave to 50th and Park.
    11 Jul 2014, 08:32 PM Reply Like
  • blurtcaster
    , contributor
    Comment (1) | Send Message
     
    Is there an "open air drug market" (purest form of capitalism) at either intersection?
    Is Sovaldi up for bidding?
    15 Jul 2014, 10:49 PM Reply Like
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