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Thread: What would happen....?

  1. #1

    What would happen....?

    There are many companies not including the huge drug companies that must make millions of pounds out of spinal injury people.

    I don't suppose they really want a cure for spinal called injury because that would put them up shit creek without a paddle wouldn't it? I sometimes wonder if some of these cures are held back because of this very reason.

  2. #2
    Banned adi chicago's Avatar
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    could be possible.imagine coca cola selling water only
    • Dum spiro, spero.
      • Translation: "As long as I breathe, I hope."

  3. #3
    Senior Member Jeepin's Avatar
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    Same goes for car companies....you know they can build something that will last for decades. But why keep your customers out of your showrooms for that long????
    Paralyze resistance with persistence.
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  4. #4
    That is the beauty of free enterprise!

    Someone can make a profit from a cure, so they will attempt to create one. It may not be from a company that profits from drugs for people with SCI, but maybe it will be if they are concerned that they'll lose out on the profits that someone else is going to make by developing a cure.

    BTW Coca Cola does sell water (Dasani), and ounce for ounce it sells for more than Coca Cola does. Coming up with a cure will not put the drug companies out of business, there are plenty of other ailments that need their help, and will be for a long time to come.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Ironside
    There are many companies not including the huge drug companies that must make millions of pounds out of spinal injury people.

    I don't suppose they really want a cure for spinal called injury because that would put them up shit creek without a paddle wouldn't it? I sometimes wonder if some of these cures are held back because of this very reason.
    Ironside, that is an popular theory that I reject. The vast majority of companies that make money from people with spinal cord injury don't have it as their primary business. Selling drugs and catheters to people with spinal cord injury just represent a small fraction of their businesses. In fact, that is our problem. Very few companies are interested in spinal cord injury. The few companies that make money from spinal cord injury would be ecstatic to have access to have a technology that would cure spinal cord injury and make a lot of money for them. I don't believe that there is a conspiracy to slow the cure for spinal cord injury by companies that are currently selling products to the spinal cord injury community. The opposite is true. If there were a path where they could get some of their promising therapies to clinical trial and beat their competition to the cure of spinal cord injury, they would take it.

    Wise.

  6. #6
    Senior Member lynnifer's Avatar
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    This is one area where I disagree with the doctor.

    A 'supposed cure' for spinal cord injury would affect a large number of people with neurological diseases. The amount of people with MS is staggering ... now imagine THAT monetary loss. Strokes or any other disabling illness.
    Roses are red. Tacos are enjoyable. Don't blame immigrants, because you're unemployable.

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  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by lynnifer
    This is one area where I disagree with the doctor.

    A 'supposed cure' for spinal cord injury would affect a large number of people with neurological diseases. The amount of people with MS is staggering ... now imagine THAT monetary loss. Strokes or any other disabling illness.

    Okay. Then why wouldn't a cure be 'too good to pass up' monetarily? Big business would want to get there, to a cure, first. Before they stand a chance of losing a lot to someone that does come up with it. Look at how the U.S. auto industry is losing it's shirt to the Japanese, as it should, their product is better for the buck. A capitalist economy drives business to always provide a better solution/product or it fails. Who's to stop the Japanese or Chinese or Swiss from curing SCI or MS. That's why pharmaceutical companies spend billions in research & development. Of course they want to protect their interests, but in a capitalistic world they best way of doing that is by creating the best product.

  8. #8
    Lynnifer and Cljanney,

    The problem is that developing a cure for spinal cord injury is costly. Most companies have a hard time getting the money needed. If one gets it from venture capitalists, they have you on a short leash and they try to get out as fast as they can. The companies that already make a lot of money invest their money on areas that they believe is less risky and can make more. The *average* cost and time for taking a new drug from discovery to market is $800 million and 11.4 years.

    The most profitable and the least risky activity that a pharmaceutical company can undertake is to make a "me-too" drug. As soon as a company has a successful drug, dozens of other companies rush out an analog of that drug to do the same and hope to split the market. When a company has a successful product, it undertakes what is euphemistically called "product cycle development", i.e. making more expensive versions of the drug before somebody else does.

    About 10 years ago, I decided that one answer to the situation was to form a company that would be oriented towards developing treatments for spinal cord injury. This company is Acorda Therapeutics. And yes, the middle four letters of Acorda does stand for "cord". Ten years and perhaps $100 million later, it is close to getting its first therapy (4-aminopyridine) through a phase 3 trial, but for multiple sclerosis. But, when it is approved by the FDA, it will be available for people with spinal cord injury.

    Capitalism is not always good for people. It is good only for one thing, making more money. Decisions are based on what gives the most return on the investment with the least risk to the shareholders. In the United States, some of the largest and best-established companies have become venerable institutions and can afford to take more risks. Some of these companies are the ones that are beginning to invest in spinal cord injury.

    Economically speaking, the greatest benefactors from a cure for spinal cord injury is the government and the people. This is because the government (and by extension the people who pay taxes) pay for the care of most people with spinal cord injury, an estimated $10 billion per year. Lifetime medical care costs for a person with spinal cord is estimated to be between $2 and $3 million and this does not count lost wages of the person or caretaker (if the caretaker is a family member).

    Thus, a cure for spinal cord injury is worth at least $2 million per person to the government. If a cure restored function to 1000 people, it is worth $2 billion (over the lifetime of the persons). If the cure restores function to 250,000 people, the amount is $500 billion, big enough to turn the heads of even politicians. By the way, the cost of care is almost directly proportional to the neurological loss.

    The insurance companies don't benefit because insurance make money by charging premiums that bring revenues that are about 10% above their costs. If the costs drop, they charge lower premiums. It is all the same to them.

    The companies that sell drugs and supplies to the spinal cord injury community don't make that much money. Although each person with spinal cord injury uses about $22,000 per year in medical care, drugs, durable equipment, supplies, hospitalization costs, etc., no single company dominates the field. Generally, spinal cord injury accounts for only a small part of each company's income. So, for example, for a company like Bard that sells catheters, the fraction of their profits that comes from spinal cord injury is probably less than 10%.

    Some here might be scratching their heads and wondering why the average annual costs are so high. This is because about 25% of the spinal cord injury community probably account for 75% of the costs. For example, I heard once the statistics that there are about 9000 people with spinal cord injury on ventilators and that the cost per year for a ventilator dependent person may be as high as $200,000 per year, depending on the number of caretakers they have. People who have neuropathic pain and spasticity probably have the highest drug costs, including baclofen pumps. And, of course, the medical care costs include caretakers.

    Wise.

  9. #9
    Dr. young,
    hi, please read the email and private message that i sent you. thanks so much.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Benny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wise Young
    The most profitable and the least risky activity that a pharmaceutical company can undertake is to make a "me-too" drug. As soon as a company has a successful drug, dozens of other companies rush out an analog of that drug to do the same and hope to split the market.
    I can't wait for all the "me-too" cures for SCI.

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