New drug that could save infants' lives has $2M price tag

Channel: Fox Business
Published: 05/08/2019 02:12 PM

Dr. Mikhail Varshavski on the $2 million potential price tag for a new Novartis medication to cure spinal muscular atrophy. FOX Business Network (FBN) is a financial news channel delivering real-time information across all platforms that impact both Main Street and Wall Street. Headquartered in...

Welcome back hi, prescription drug price is a new treatment that could save infants lives, maybe a getting a shocking sticker price over two million dollars. Novartis believes the drug that treats spinal muscular atrophy a disease that typically strikes infants and can kill them before the age of two years old will justify the seven-figure price tag. Joining us now is dr. michaela bartowski, also ...
nown as dr. mike. That'S mike. It'S great to see this morning soon. What do you think about this? I think it's a bittersweet story. First, you have a genetic disorder known as spinal muscular atrophy, where children generally that have the worst form of disease died before the age of two. That'S ahorrible condition to be born with now. If you have a medication that can treat that illness and not just treat it mariya cure this illness, that's magical, that's amazing! We'Re making great progress, but then, when you hear that it's going to be at such a high cost at two million dollars for a single treatment, that's scary not only to patients but also to ensures as a doctor. My thing is: we need to have access to medications.

We need to have reasonable prices for medications if you're gon na have a life-saving treatment, a curing treatment, but it's unaffordable what's the use of even having that treatment, but these children will get this. We need to be clearabout this dr. , mike these children. If they have this genetic disorder and there's a way to treat it and save their lives, they will get it. The hospitals and their doctors will make sure that they get it one way or another. No, that's how many, how many children infants suffer from this 300 a year are born in the us. Was the us government have an orphan drug law that provided assistance to make sure that a small number of patients get this kind of treatment? I'M not familiar with that law. I know that drug law. I know that what becomes difficult for patients, regardless of what condition they have, is that it's difficult to treat pharmaceuticalsas a typical commodity. For example, if a parent has a child born with spinal muscular atrophy, they can't choose not to purchase this medication, so whatever it costs whatever insurance plan, they have to buy doing they're good at money for do. We know what it costs to develop this drug, the cost is high and that's what novartis is saying. The reason for this huge price tag is, but when there's been independent evaluation of this drug and what it should cost based on evaluation of a quality life score life years gain scores.

They say that the price that's being set right now is too high. Obviously, novartis is arguing that and i think that it needsto be heavily justified as why a drug needs to cost at such a high rate. The world health organization urging international travelers to get back saying you've got europeans actually now facing an measles for outbreak as well as the us. Well, what happens in the u. s. is you have an unvaccinated population, that's being exposed to measles from travelers in your live? Now we have a major epidemic dr. My thank you.

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