A crucial cancer drug which was marginally affordable for cancer patients till 40 years has become nearly 1,400 percent more expensive. The new owners have increased the price of the drug by a huge margin, making it potentially out of reach for many patients who suffer from brain tumors and Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
Reports state that the 40-year-old life-saving cancer drug is not protected by patents any longer, and no generic version of the medication is currently available in the market.
The Wall Street Journal said that the drug lomustine was sold by was sold by Bristol-Myers Squib for years under the brand name CeeNU at a price of about $50 per capsule for the highest dose. The firm sold the drug to a little-known startup in Miami in 2013 called NextSource.
The particular startup has increased the drug’s price nearly nice time since its acquisition. The medication now costs about $768 per pill.
The Journal by Truveen Health Analytics and Elsevier conducted and analysis and found out that NextSource increased the prices for the drug this year, and rebranded it as Gleostine. The price of the medication was increased by 12 percent in November following a 20 percent increase in August.
NextSource CEO Robert DiCrisci, said that the firm sets its prices based on the costs it incurs while developing the medication and also on the benefits the drug provides to the affected patients. He also added that the company provides discounts and financial assistance to those people who cannot afford to buy the medication, there are other drug makers who provide the same facility to people.
A professor of neurosurgery at Duke University School of Medicine, Henry S. Friedman, said that either many people will suffer unfortunate events because they cannot afford the medicines or many of them will face severe financial liability in an attempt to procure the drug.