Patent Law Gives The Drug Industry The Wrong Incentives

from the so-goes-patent-law dept

Yet another indication of how the faulty patent system is doing serious damage to our society comes in the form of a new book that looks at the drug industry and all its shady practices. The book, The Truth About the Drug Companies: How They Deceive Us and What to Do About It, by Dr. Marcia Angell, an MD and former editor of the New England Journal of Medicine, claims the industry was kept in check until the 1980s when the government changed the rules so that the pharma industry could conduct research with public funds, then patent the findings and keep all the profits. Instead of innovating, the warped system encourages them to spend on lots of marketing and gimmicks. Why plow a lot of money into the high-risk proposition of trying to cure cancer when you can use that money instead to keep your lock on the allergy medicine market? So, when your patent on Claritin runs out, you do some research and marketing, and bingo, you’ve got Clarinex which works on indoor allergies as opposed to outdoor allergies.

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