The US federal government has tried for the second time this year to give exclusive rights to foreign pharmaceutical companies to sell drugs after a research was conducted from tax-payer funds. This time, they plan to give the exclusive license to a Chinese company which will allow them to sell a new drug used in treating liver cancer.
The Chinese company is a branch from the Shenzhen Salubris Pharmaceuticals run by Ye Chenghai, a billionaire former mayor of Shenzhen.
The issue is concerning because pharmaceutical companies are given monopolies on drugs or vaccines which have been previously developed and researched through taxpayer funds; and instead of selling them to the Americans at reasonable prices, most of the companies did the opposite.
In order to solve this issue, Sen. Bernie Sanders proposed to federal agencies or research universities to sign an agreement in which they agree to a reasonable price from the manufacturing pharmaceutical company in order to have exclusive rights to all the health care medicine that has been researched.
This proposal came after a French pharmaceutical company demanded an exclusive license to manufacture a Zika vaccine which was previously developed by the U.S. Army. They refused to sell the vaccine back to the tax-paid funded research at a low cost, making the vaccine available at exorbitant prices: up to 8 times more expensive than in France or the UK.
Shenzhen Salubris Pharmaceuticals might have access to exclusive rights as the treatment which was developed by the NIH and they intend of giving it to this company. Until now there haven’t been any comments made public by NIH or Shenzhen Salubris.
Lawmakers will surely be against monopoly deals if the pharmaceutical company will not accept to prove the drugs at a low cost. The taxpayer-funded drugs should not come at a higher cost than that of other countries.
If the NIH will decide to agree on giving exclusive rights without setting a price on the treatments, it will not serve the American public’s interests, and that’s what they are supposed to do.