Turing Pharmaceuticals’ decision to raise the price of a life-saving drug is just not cool.

by Martha Pietruszewski

Patients with HIV or AIDS deserve affordable treatment — but one man has really thrown a wrench in that plan by trying to take away a drug that can help immunocompromised patients. 
Martin Shkreli, CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals, recently raised the price of Daraprim, a drug used to treat rare parasitic infections. The price went from about $13.50 to $750 per pill, literally overnight.
You cannot do that. Raising the price of this drug increases the annual treatment costs for some patients to hundreds of thousands of dollars. Paying that much more for something that was already expensive is simply unfair to the patients who need the drug most.
Before he eventually backed away from his decision and agreed to lower the price again, Shkreli argued that his company needed to raise Daraprim’s price to fund more research. 
While research and innovation are always necessary in the pharmaceutical world, there has to be a better way to do it than price gouging. 
Just last week, Imprimis, another pharmaceutical company, said it will offer an approximately $1 per-pill alternative to Daraprim. 
Even though Imprimis has made this promise, it still won’t happen for free. The company still needs to fundraise somehow. 
To do this, I believe Imprimis could incrementally raise prices of all drugs across the board. A $5 increase won’t hurt the consumer as much as a 4,000 percent increase will.
While raising the prices by a little bit isn’t ideal, it’s leagues ahead of price gouging.
Because there is no cure for AIDS, cancer, ALS or a multitude of other life-threatening diseases, we must continue to do what we can to support the people who face them.