VIDEO: Do Expensive Hep C Drugs Like Sovaldi Actually Reduce Costs?

Joel Anderson |

The race to produce the first effective Hepatitis C drug, and capture the massive profits that come with it, appears to have been won by Gilead Sciences (GILD) . At least, that is, for now.

However, the price of Gilead's drug, Sovaldi, has raised serious questions about just what the cost of the drug should be. Sovaldi was in the spotlight in March after Henry Waxman wrote a letter to Gilead CEO Dr. John C. Martin asking for Dr. Martin to explain the $1,000 a pill price tag his company had attached to the treatment.

In this clip, though, CNBC contributor Barbara Ryan observes that the price tag of the drug should be kept in the context of its benefits, including potentially saving lives as well as eliminating the downstream costs associated with Hep C and the liver damage it causes. It's a different perspective, and certainly one friendlier to the biotech industry than the tone that Waxman set in his letter. But it's certainly worth noting that Sovaldi should ultimately result in dramatic reductions in health care costs for its patients if it results in a viable treatment for Hep C.



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Symbol Name Price Change % Volume
GILD Gilead Sciences Inc. 72.46 -0.36 -0.49 2,335,914 Trade
PREUF Prosperity Re Invst Tr 0.41 0.00 0.00 1,000


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