Thursday, September 19, 2019 - The Trump administration is using Gilead's 2 million bottles per year Truvada giveaway program as political ammunition to demonstrate his good intentions to wipe out HIV and AIDS. "We will come up with the cures to many problems including diseases such as cancer and others and were getting closer all the time. We will eradicate AIDS in America (by 2020)," Trump stated recently at his 2020 campaign kickoff rally in Orlando Florida. One problem with the administration's unbridled optimism is that the 2 million bottles of Truvada that Gilead is set to give away for free to people without health insurance are about only one-tenth of the amount that is needed to get the drug into the hands of those that need it. The Truvada free giveaway program amounts to little more than a marketing scheme to seamlessly transition patients from one of Gilead's drugs to another and to keep inexpensive generic competition off of the market. Gilead's intends to replace Truvada with Descovy as soon as the former goes off-patent and the later is granted FDA approval keeping the price charged to insurance companies at the $1600-$2000 per month level for years to come. Giving away Truvada will also result in a sizeable tax deduction for Gilead, much needed in fact to offset the $3 billion in annual profits the company is booking every year on the drug. "Gilead could reduce its tax liability by about $1 billion." financial experts told the New York Times. Truvada lawsuit attorneys are representing families and individuals that have suffered bone loss and kidney failure from taking the medication Truvada and offer a free no obligation consultation before filing a lawsuit claim.
The Truvada giveaway scheme is also being used to push Descovy through the FDA's fast-track approval process and the side effects of the drug will be monitored post-market on human subjects. The 2 million bottles of the drug will treat roughly 200,000 patients per year not nearly enough, according to the New York Times, to make a dent in the AIDS epidemic. In a recent article critical of the Truvada/Descovy giveaway program titled "A Million Americans Need This Drug. Trump's Deal Won't Help Enough of Them" the paper points out that the program will do more to help Gilead than it will stop the spread of HIV, and that it costs Gilead Sciences only $6 to make $1600 (retail) worth of the drug.
Other critics of the program such as US Congressman Elijah Cummings and Congresswoman Alexandria Cortez have laid claim on the patent on behalf of US taxpayers for Truvada reasoning that the drug was discovered and developed using government grants. Gilead could be forced by the Department of Justice to pay $1 billion in back royalties to the Center for Disease Control. "The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention holds a patent on the medication, and the Justice Department is investigating whether the company owes the federal government back royalties on that patent." It should be noted that prescription drug prices are kept at an artificially high level to compensate drug companies for the research and development risks and that for every drug discovery that is as effective as Truvada, 99 drugs never even make it to market.
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.