Wednesday, November 13, 2019 - Gilead Sciences' exorbitant pricing of Truvada is keeping millions of Americans who do not have adequate health insurance from reaping the benefits of the drug. Truvada is 99% effective in preventing the spread of HIV and is at the forefront of the US government's pledge to wipe out AIDS in the next decade but the price of the drug keeps most of the people who need it from being able to get it. Gilead charges upwards of $20,000 per year for the one-per-day pill that costs mere pennies to manufacture resulting in Gilead Sciences making billions of dollars per year from selling the drug. Other countries have nationalized the drug and give away for free to anyone who wants it. Truvada lawsuits lawyer represent Americans harmed from pharmaceuticals and have vast experience litigating claims against corporations and big pharma.
US Government officials especially those in Congress view Gilead's refusal to lower the price of the drug and make it available to everyone a clear example of corporate greed and all that is wrong with the capitalist system. Why should some people be allowed to live (with health insurance) and others forced to die all the while Gilead shareholders make billions? Gilead's greedy pricing has forced the government to file a lawsuit against the company to reclaim the patent that the government thinks rightfully belongs to the US taxpayer. After all, Truvada was originally discovered and developed by scientists using government grant research money. According to ScienceMag, "Truvada for PrEP has earned Gilead billions of dollars, and the government contends it deserves some of those earnings because it helped develop the intervention. Specifically, the government alleges Gilead failed to obtain licenses to use four patents that CDC obtained on research results related to PrEP. Gilead has repeatedly refused to obtain a license from CDC to use the patented regimens, the federal lawsuit states. Meanwhile, Gilead has profited from research funded by hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars... but has not paid any royalties to CDC." The lawsuit further contends that "Gilead's conduct was malicious, wanton, deliberate, consciously wrongful, flagrant, and in bad faith," ScienceMag wrote.
Gilead spokespersons argue that the company is the rightful patent owner and does not owe royalties to the US government because the drug's patent to Truvada only being able to fight the progression of AIDS in HIV positive individuals, the drug's original purpose. Gilead cleverly patented the drug for use as an HIV transmission prevention drug and prepossessed it as such catching the US government attorneys off guard until now. The case has been referred to the court and could take years to resolve.
In the meantime, Gilead Sciences has partnered with the Trump Administration to make 2.4 million bottles of Truvada available to people without health insurance and distributed through community outreach programs and the CDC available for free for each of the next ten years. New patients will be required to prove that they are HIV negative and pass a battery of tests before being able to receive the drug and each time they refill their prescription. Critics of the "free" giveaway program contend that the amount of the drug being given away will not make a dent in the overall transmission of the disease and also that poorer people will not be able to afford the medical test requirements and follow up medical visits to qualify to receive the drug.
OnderLaw, LLC is a St. Louis personal injury law firm handling serious injury and death claims across the country. Its mission is the pursuit of justice, no matter how complex the case or strenuous the effort. The Onder Law Firm has represented clients throughout the United States in pharmaceutical and medical device litigation such as Pradaxa, Lexapro and Yasmin/Yaz, where the firm's attorneys held significant leadership roles in the litigation, as well as Actos, DePuy, Risperdal and others. The firm has represented thousands of persons in these and other products liability litigation, including DePuy hip replacement systems, which settled for $2.5 billion and Pradaxa internal bleeding, which settled for $650 million. The Onder Law Firm won over $300 million in four talcum powder ovarian cancer lawsuits in St. Louis to date and other law firms throughout the nation often seek its experience and expertise on complex litigation.