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Home / Business / Sanders wants answers on why low-cost drug is suddenly priced at $ 375,000

Sanders wants answers on why low-cost drug is suddenly priced at $ 375,000



"Catalyst's decision to set the annual list price at $ 375,000 is not only applicable to American taxpayers, but is also an immoral exploitation of patients who need this medication," wrote the independent senator from Vermont. "Simply put, it's corporate money.

" I am profoundly concerned that Catalyst's actions will cause patients to suffer or die. "

Sanders sent the letter to Patrick McEnany, president and CEO of Calayst Pharmaceuticals, about the pricing Firdapse, which is used to treat a rare neuromuscular disease called Lambert-Eaton myasthenic syndrome. The disease weakens and fatigues the body's muscles and affects about 1 in 1
00,000 people in the United States. describe the financial and non-financial factors that led to the rise of the price so dramatically.

"How many patients will suffer from the cost price of $ 375,000?"

However, Sanders' letter also notes that the company has said many Firdapse patients will pay about $ 10 out of pocket each month, and he asked for more detail about that claim.

Sanders asked the company to respond by February 18. When contacted by CNN, Catalyst said it had no immediate response.

Patients had been able to get a version of the drug for free through a compliant use program through the US Food and Drug Administration. In November, the North American license for Firdapse acquired and then announced in December 13, phone call with investors, its intention to set the list price at $ 375,000, according to the letter.

"By setting such a high price and forcing production and distribution of the older, inexpensive version to cease, you are threatening access to patients with a cheap version of this product, and a completely unwarranted bill to American taxpayers," Sanders wrote.

The letter comes at a time when Americans have grown in the increasing prices of pharmaceuticals, with President Trump and lawmakers on both sides of the aisle saying more needs to be done to curb skyrocketing prices.


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