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export atripla to the US

Mar 26, 2014

I live in a central american country and here atripla is way cheaper than in the US, i have read that there you have to spend up to 1200 monthly, is there a way I can help and sell original meds in a lower price, its awful how the pharmacy companies, insurances, laws, etc. Complicate this issue and with the actual economy its gettin worse don`t you think?

Response from Dr. Young

Hello and thanks for posting.

Drug pricing is a really complicated issue and yes, HIV medications are very expensive.

Prices across different countries differ because of all sorts of negotiated contracts, the economic situation (low income countries are able to purchase brand products at discount, or can get generic medications that are not available in high income countries).

Unlike in most countries, the prices of drugs are not negotiated with the government and consequently are set at "what the market will bear"- that is to say higher. Medication costs are just the tip of a very expensive healthcare iceberg in our country, where for-profit systems and legal risks drive up the costs of care.

Unfortunately, the importation of drugs into the US for sale is usually illegal. But fortunately, we've managed to stitch together a network of governmental, private insurance and pharmaceutical company systems that manages to provide HIV medications to nearly everyone who needs them.

The most pressing issue here in my opinion, is that the vast majority of people living with HIV aren't productively connected to healthcare. 20% don't know their HIV status, another 20% who do, aren't linked to a doctor. Working this out is a critical and challenging issue.

Thanks for asking, BY

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