The Hepatitis-C Virus (HCV) drugs of Gilead Sciences are the poster cases of monopolistic abuse. Gilead owns the patent for the molecule Sofosbuvir, which is sold in two formulations under the brand names Sovaldi and Harvoni. Gilead charges the federal government $84,000 ($1,000 per pill) for a full course of Sovaldi and $94,500 for Harvoni, even though production costs are under $200 per course of treatment. The company is making a killing and, incidentally, adds insult to injury by booking its outlandish US profits in an Irish tax haven.
While the government buys tens of thousands of HCV treatments from Gilead, it is also forced to ration its purchases because of budget constraints. Hundreds of thousands of HCV-infected Americans, both on and off government programs, are unable to obtain the medicines. Many of those being turned away are US veterans who survived their tours in Iraq or Afghanistan only to be killed by Gilead’s not-so-friendly fire.
Rational Drug Pricing