Official figures state that 841,000 Americans died from drug overdoses between 1999 and 2019, and that opioids caused 70.6 percent of drug overdose deaths in 2019. The CDC also reports that in 2020, overdoses spiked by about 30 percent for all drugs and nearly 37 percent for opioids, the highly predictable result of the fear and economic hardship caused by COVID-19. It reported 93,000 overdose deaths that year, which, when combined with deaths in 2021, undoubtedly takes us past the 1 million mark as a modest estimate for drug overdoses over the past two decades, and more than 660,000 deaths from opioid overdoses for the same period.
Pharmaceutical companies have vehemently opposed patent waivers for decades. Intellectual property forms the basis for Big Pharma’s $700 billion a year industry in the United States. If those protections are weakened, drug companies stand to lose obscene amounts of money.
These vaccines were funded by public money and are desperately needed worldwide if we are to end this pandemic.
— Global Justice Now (@GlobalJusticeUK) April 22, 2021
At a recent virtual gathering of parents and faculty at my children’s school, one parent who is a teacher and therefore eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine mentioned that she got her first Pfizer shot at a local pharmacy, and when she asked about a leftover dose that could be given to her husband rather than thrown away, her husband got lucky. The rest of us parents eagerly took down the drug store’s information and called about leftover doses after the meeting. Better for the vaccines to be dispensed than thrown into the trash, was our logic.
At a recent virtual gathering of parents and faculty at my children’s school, one parent who is a teacher and therefore eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine mentioned that she got her first Pfizer shot at a local pharmacy, and when she asked about a leftover dose that could be given to her husband rather More
On June 29th, 2020, while America remained transfixed by anti-police protests, the chairman and CEO of the pharmaceutical company Gilead issued a much-anticipated announcement. In a breezy open letter, Daniel O’Day explained how much his company planned on charging for a course of remdesivir, one of many possible treatments for Covid-19.
“The amount of money the government is throwing at companies is unprecedented. Normally when you write bigger checks, you should have more leverage, not less leverage.”