When I started writing my Hepatitis C Blog back in 2015 it was mostly about my own journey to find affordable Hep C treatment and then about my healing process.
But everything got much bigger than I had ever expected so since those days I have written about lots of subjects, trying to provide useful and easy to understand information about all aspects of Hep C treatment as well as sharing the stories of people around the world who have gone down that path of treating and surviving Hepatitis C.
My story has becomes the story of everyone trying to access affordable Hep C treatment and cure that terrible disease.
Today I would like to share something from my day to day life that is very painful for me, its about the insane greed of Big Pharma and terrible despair caused by the current pricing of Hep C medication, even the generic Hep C medication.
Hepatitis C could be totally eliminated from the planet if it was not for the obscene greed that keeps medication prices high.
Every day I get emails from people who live in such impoverished conditions that even the cheapest generic Hep C medication is totally beyond their reach.
I have just found your Hepatitis C support website and I would like to ask about getting the medicines.
I learned that I have Hepatitis C about a year ago.
I see that you offer a very good price of US$350 for treatment for poor people but for me it is almost impossible.
My pay in only 20,000 naira per month, about US$60 per month.
How can I get the medicine I need to cure this disease?
So, what can I do? Certainly I could reduce the price by subsidising it myself. I could even provide the medication for free to a few people, but I could not do this for everyone who needs Hep C medication, not even to one out of the ten or more people who write to me each day asking for help.
The reality is that I cannot give away free medication. Even if I sold my home and everything I own I could not supply even one hundred thousandth of the medication needed.
But here is the weird thing: If the pay of the top executives for Gilead’s top five executives for one year was used to buy Epclusa at GILEAD’s cost price of less than $1 per pill, they could totally eradicate Hepatitis C from the entire planet.
To give you an idea of just how much money just the top five GILEAD executives have made out of the grossly inflated prices of Hepatitis C medicine here is what these top five GILEAD executives made in the year of 2014-15:
Robin Washington $26 million
Norbert Bischofberg $50 million
Gregg Alton $56 million
John Milligan $89 million
John Martin (CEO) $189 million
In 2015-16 those incomes nearly doubled for most of these executives.
So on one hand we have good, honest, hardworking people who are dying from Hepatitis C who are earning $50 to $100 per month who have no hope at all of saving or borrowing the money to buy generic Hep C treatment. On the other hand we have five individuals who are making an inconceivable, obscene amount of money by pricing an essential medication out of the reach of most of the planet’s people.
Over the next 12 months more than half a million people will die from the effects of Hepatitis C. Tends of millions more will suffer the debilitating effects of Hepatitis C. In the future the people who prevented access to the cheap and effective treatment of Hepatitis C will be seen as examples of the very worst of 21st century greed.
To see just how evil Big Pharma is, you should watch the documentary Drug$ on YouTube. This documentary is a fact dense megalith that shows just how corrupt the medical and pharmaceutical system is in the USA and, by default, the rest of the world. It takes an effort to watch it all the way through but it is worth the effort.