Investigation Finds Drug Companies Colluded Together To Raise The Cost Of Life Saving Medications



Few months ago we reported on an investigation
into whether or not generic drug makers were colluding to raise prices and to keep competitors
out of certain markets. That investigation has now grown into full
blown lawsuits coming from 44 states. I have Farron Cousins from the Trial Lawyer
Magazine with me now to explain what is happening. Well, it's pretty apparent what's happening
is price gouging and we've been talking about this story. Finally, finally, you know, I still don't
know that, that television media is covering this story because TV media is making so much
money on advertisements. I mean it's, what is it about every eight
minutes, there's a pharmaceutical advertisement? Yeah, I mean they're, they're all over the
place in corporate media and you know, the, the corporate news media is no exception to
that. That's where they get a lot of their money. But with this story, you know, again, this
is what we talked about a few years ago. This is the one that had the sandbox where
you have these drug companies, the generic makers, they go into a specific market and
they say, I'm going to take one pharmacy. You take another, you other company, you take
another, we can all raise our prices accordingly. But nobody competes at the same pharmacy in
a given area. That that's the overall kind of scheme that
the investigators have called a cartel basically. So now what we found is that basically the
story everybody's been waiting for you have collusion and obstruction of justice is what
they're describing it as. Because the obstruction of justice comes from
the fact that you have Teva Pharmaceuticals deleting evidence, deleting text messages,
deleting emails that showed that their executives were working with the other pharmacies to
do this and instructing them on what to say to investigators. Yeah, let me put in perspective. Last week or a couple of weeks ago, we did
a show where the pharmaceutical company had marked up a drug 100000%. You remember? 100 not making that up. It was a drug for babies that were, the children
were having seizures and the company marked it up 100000%. Now this story talks about the run of the
mill markup is, is it 100%, 200%, 20000%. The numbers of these markups are staggering. Okay. 100000% is not unusual and that's a staggering
number. And what ends up happening is these companies
that, that people that are named and people like Pfizer, Teva, Novartis, Mylan. And what I love about this story is that also
you have dozens of senior executives that are, have been named. As matter of fact, one of the executives,
they, I mean is in the story, that fella named Nisha Patel. Yeah. So Nisha Patel goes about, no this is girl,
a woman, isn't it? I believe so. Yeah. So Nisha Patel goes about destroying emails
because they know that there's an investigation taking place. So they go about destroying emails. That's where the obstruction comes in. Right. The collusion is maybe sometimes a little
more difficult to prove. Prosecutors are going to be able to prove
it here, I promise you. But when you get to, to collusion, you've,
you've moved from just a pure civil action, if it involves any type of criminal collusion. I'm wondering if this is where this goes. Where do you think, what do you think? I think absolutely. I think in this particular instance, this
is not going to be something that is difficult to prove because they may not have Nisha Patel's
communications anymore, but keep in mind she was destroying evidence in 2016. This investigation began in 2014 I believe. 44 state attorneys general are on top of this. And she, and she's still destroying material. Right, but there's no way she could have destroyed
everything, so there's a good chance parts of it are still out there. Obstruction hundred percent that's going to
be easy. Prosecution, what's your call? I mean, yeah, of course it's impossible to
get to, to get the government to prosecute anybody who's dressed up in a three piece
suit or has a Rolex watch or maybe is in Washington, I mean in Washington or Wall Street, forget
trying to get prosecution. What's your call on this one though? I believe that Patel is going to end up singing
like a bird to, to the investigators and saying, listen, please don't prosecute me. You want to know the truth. Here's what happened. At the end of the day, everybody's probably
going to get fined a ridiculous amount that's still less than they made gouging consumers
with these markups. In other words, here, here it is. They bring charges and the company pays their
way out of the charges. They say, well, we'll pay you $2 billion. In the end, people don't realize taxpayers
end up paying that $2 billion because it's a write off for the company. And so, you know, that's what they've been
doing for decades now. So if as we look at this case, these are drugs
that affect, I mean these are serious drugs. They were saving people's lives with HIV. They're saying the markup was ridiculous. People couldn't even afford to get HIV drugs,
antidepressants, cancer, drugs. These weren't simply, this was an aspirin
or you know, minor kind of medication. This was life saving kind of material. And these people are so callous that they
still marked it up. They colluded. They had, as you point out, their sandbox
where they would meet in exotic places. Right? Tell us about that. Yeah, they, they would go have these wonderful
dinners, these meetings, I forget the exact name of it that we had talked about in the
past, but they actually had a name for the meetings, their little club meetings, and
that's when they would sit there and break up the pharmacies in any given city, county,
whatever it was, and said, all right, we're all gonna play in the sandbox. But in order to play nicely, we have to divide
the sandbox. Nobody steps onto the other one's turf. We all get an equal share. And this is part of the collusion part, we
all raise our prices accordingly. So that way our generic is not more expensive
than your generic. We're all on the same page. And that's what allowed them to do things
like right here. Albuterol sulfate, used to treat asthma and
other lung conditions. They raised the price on that. The generic 4,014%. Yeah. All right, we'll follow this story.

43 comments

  1. It always comes back to the same Usual Suspects. The hell spawn king pins of political and financial corruption, fraud, tyranny, murder and rampant profiteering.

    Teva shares tumble as company faces price-fixing lawsuit
    The Israeli pharmaceutical company is being sued in the US following an alleged price-fixing conspiracy worth "many billions of dollars."
    By Eytan Halon
    May 13, 2019 02:19 https://www.jpost.com/Israel-News/Teva-rejects-wrongdoing-in-drug-price-fixing-lawsuit-589455

  2. Don't forget to indict the pharmaceutical companies sales representatives that buy these doctors extravagant gifts for prescribing these expensive drugs to patients.

  3. Welcome to bankster rule.
    THEY learned from the best, the banksters who used the same methods to setup the Federal Reserve. The fish rots from the head down.

  4. It's what happens when there is no effective regulation on the activities of drug companies who shouldn't be allowed to advertise prescribed drugs on television and whose pursuit of profits outweighs their social obligations. Capitalism out of control.

  5. Yeah, tell me about it.
    My wifes meds were $16,000 a Month.
    We are down to $7,000 a month now.
    They create the disease, create the drugs & create their own revenue.
    Doesn't take a genius to figure that out.

  6. 44 states suing the pharma companies. So the states will get the money, but the people that have been paying too much money won't get anything back.
    I would like to know who is the worst rip-off?

  7. "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much, it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little."
    Franklin D. Roosevelt

  8. 4:50 white collar criminals need to be executed we need a zero tolerance attitude for white collar crime

  9. Holding lives hostage for extortionately high cost. That’s crony capitalism for you. “Oh this life saving drug costs too much for you? Sorry, guess you die. Next in line please.”

  10. I would put ALL these" executives " in prison,preferably,in a Renovated Alcatraz,and also fine them quite highly,as well!

  11. Until Executives of these companies are incarcerated, not much will change. Fines just don't cut it, just like in the Financial Industry, it's just the cost of doing business.

  12. Medicare 4 All & government takeover of production of medicine, stops this shit & gives Americans affordable healthcare

  13. We need an investigation to find the surprise and shock we should have on this. They manipulate when generics can come out, control the price of both, and we're supposed to be surprised to find they colluded with each other to jack prices. What next? Study to find water is wet?

  14. These drug companies need to be punished severely and not only do they need to be heavily fined the company executives responsible need to be sent to federal prison for lengthy prison sentences.

  15. Everyone who buys prescriptions should know the NNT – numbers needed to treat…in most instances the numbers are below 1% or in the negative…ijs

  16. Hemp whole plant extract, CBD and cannabis oil are poised to send many of these medications/drugs to the dust bin of history. FACT. https://youtu.be/H3EP2nV_6Cc  Medical Cannabis, The Herb and Its Applications This talk will be presented by Judy Mikovitz PhD

    https://youtu.be/AWuM8SQ9aU0
    The Re-Discovery of the Benefits of Medicinal Cannabis – Dr. John Hicks

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    Understanding the Endocannabinoid System, National Institutes of Health

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    Clinical Application of Cannabinoids and Terpenes | M. Gordon, Cannafest 2015

    https://youtu.be/YR8A0lskwTY  

    The Endocannabinoid System, Patients out of Time:  Mary Lynne Mathre, Part 1 of 5.

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    CBDTV Reel 1 Doctors and Diabetes Testimonies

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    The Inside Story of Cannabidiol – What Are the Benefits of CBD?

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    Dr. Stuart Titus, CBD and medical research

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    Dr. Blair on CBD for PTSD

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    Dr. Donald Abrams on anxiety, depression and PTSD

    https://youtu.be/TTeagW1XONI
    David Bearman M.D. Cannabis, cannabinoids, ADHD/ADD, Tourette's Syndrome, Migraine Headaches, Bi-Polar disorder

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    Dr. David Allen the discovery of the endocannabinoid system

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    The Endocannabinoid system in health and disease, Dr. Ethan Russo Part 1

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    Dr. Michelle Weiner How your endocannabinoid system works to treat patients Canna Ed Day 2017

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    The Endocannabinoid System (ECS) Treatment Implications in ASD – Tracy Fritz, MD

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    Cannabis and Gut Health:  Medical Marijuana Science

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    Does medical marijuana relieve back pain Dr. Rachna Patel

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    Dr. Lumir Hanus  – Why is Cannabis Such a Successful Medicine

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    Cannabis Against Cancer Dr. Christina Sanchez PhD.,  Mara Gordon, Dr. Dennis Landaverde, Andrea Cartin MD

     

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    Dr. Blair on inflammation and CBD

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    Cannabidiol Science : For Doctors : For Patients Americans for Safe Access

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  17. Taxpayers got to pay for much of the gouging. When the child covered by Medical needed the seizure medicine that was raised in price 100 fold, the bill was given to the tax payer of the medicine was provided. Otherwise, with ongoing untreated seizures, the child (or adult) has serious brain cell die off, leading to permanent impairment.

  18. So no matter what's proven, these companies will be allowed to keep the costs of the generic drugs at the price they're charging now?

  19. Disgusting, my neighbor, 73, has not been able to afford her insullin for 5 months, $500.00 to fill it. Waiting for a stroke anyday.

  20. It's time to wage war on these bastards. If they don't want to sell these drugs at affordable prices, rip the patents away from them and give them to someone who will.

  21. The reason Big Pharma is able to steal from US citizens is because of Congress. The 2 Party political system receives massive campaign cash which then allows the "legalized" extortion of as much greed as they can perpetrate against the citizens.

    The Republican Party and the corporate Democrats must be removed from power.

    Sanders 2020

  22. We have all heard the expression "thick as thieves," here it is in real time, these big pharma companies are stealing every last dime they can take from those in need of life saving medications – so they can fill their coffers a little fuller. I understand it costs a lot of money to research and develop new drugs and that those companies need to be profitable but in the age of "no collusion" Trump, all considerations for doing the right thing, in the right way, for the right reasons are all but gone.

    Those companies are now putting a price on human life and those who die that cannot afford their prescribed medications are just collateral damage in the war of free market place profiteering.

    But, wait! Let’s not allow abortions anywhere, anyplace, any time (Alabama)…that would be wrong and unethical. Let them be born, grow up, and the wealthy elite in cahoots with the government can send them off to some god forsaken war somewhere to die, while they profit off of their spilled blood…that's much better.

    Was the America I was raised to believe in always just an illusion?

  23. I don't know how "collusion" became so popular. It used to be called conspiracy, which it is.
    edit: added the last three words.

  24. A friend of mine takes a cancer drug. It is over $800 a month in America. He goes to Mexico. The very same drug from the same company, is $114 a month. Used to be able to walk across. Now he had to get a passport, not to get in , but to get back into America. He told me the border patrol hassles them for 2 hours. This is a lifelong American born and bred, lived on the same property is entire life. And the border patrol hassles him….. This country has become a disgrace.

  25. If you deregulate the markets, businesses will lie, cheat, and swindle people out of their money like nobody’s business. Corporations don’t want to help anyone but themselves. You think they ‘care’ about you? No. They want to make money off of you and WILL hike up the prices collectively because they KNOW you need the medication to LIVE. Vote blue, vote justice democrat… we need to regulate these businesses so they don’t take advantage of our sick and dying!

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