The maker of a drug shown to shorten recovery time for severely ill COVID-19 patients says it will charge $2,340 for a typical treatment course for people covered by government health programs in the United States and other developed countries. Gilead Sciences announced the price Monday for remdesivir, and said the price would be $3,120 for patients with private insurance. The amount that patients pay out of pocket depends on insurance, income and other factors.
“We’re in uncharted territory with pricing a new medicine, a novel medicine, in a pandemic,” Gilead’s chief executive, Dan O’Day, told The Associated Press.
“We believe that we had to really deviate from the normal circumstances and price the drug to ensure wide access rather than based solely on value to patients, he said.
The 250,000 treatment courses that the company had donated to the US and other countries will run out in about a week, and the prices will apply to the drug after that.
The council has been requesting the government to allow these exports as the production of PPE has increased to over 8 lakh units per day.
A single mask manufacturing machine can produce one lakh pieces per day and we have more than 200 such machines currently, he said.
The government should soon extend the export opportunity for N95 masks as well, he said, adding that the size of the global market for PPEs is more than USD 60 billion for the next five years.
The chairman further said that India is in competition with countries like Bangladesh, Indonesia and Pakistan as they have lifted the ban on PPE exports and are receiving huge orders from large buyers in the US and Europe.