On the Rise

If you are a consumer of just about anything, you realize the costs have skyrocketed.  We aren’t just talking about airfare or designer brands here, we are talking about necessities too.  Things like food, services, housing, and healthcare are needed for survival.   Millions of Americans are feeling the pinch of day-to-day living expenses, causing a familiar but frightening word that rhymes with depression to occupy the thoughts of many.  When people start to worry about an economic downturn, they tighten the purse strings, spending less and hoarding more.  In turn, businesses scale back to cut costs, and many times those cutbacks include eliminating jobs.  Now that puts us in quite a predicament, as without jobs, we don’t have income, and without income, we certainly can’t afford those things like food, housing, or healthcare.  The sheer thought of not knowing where your next meal will come from or where you will lay your head at night is enough to trigger an onset of depression/anxiety.  To take it up another notch, studies indicate that roughly 25% of homeless people struggle with mental illness and 35% with some form of substance abuse. For the staff at the Dismiss Home of New Hampshire, healthcare is heavy on our minds, perhaps because it’s our business.  We want to see a world where everyone has access to good affordable medical care that will improve the quality of their lives. So how do we fix this? How do we stop this spiral?

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These are questions policymakers have been discussing since what seems to be the dawn of time but appear no closer to a workable solution.  Many people are skeptical about the new proposal pushing for significant drug price control to combat the healthcare system’s affordability problem.  While everyone agrees with the goal of reducing the costs of healthcare, prescriptions in particular, the question is how do we get there as efficiently and effectively as possible?  Before this question can even be attempted Congress needs to take into consideration the following;

  1. There will be delays in access to innovative treatments.  Our nation has a history of medical innovation and leads in the development of new treatments and cures. Medical discoveries and breakthrough treatments are paid for by pharmaceutical manufacturers in partnership with the National Institute of Health, Universities and other private groups.  
  2. Studies show that drug price controls will reduce funding for the research and development of new drugs.  One study indicates that every $2.5 billion of additional revenue leads to one new drug approval.  The price of a single drug doesn’t just have to cover that drug’s development and production costs; it also has to cover the costs of other drugs that didn’t get approved.  These manufactures spend more on research and development than any other industry creating treatments and cures that have the potential to save and improve millions of lives.  
  3. The revenue from drugs allow Research and Development to contribute to the American job sector through funding and investing of more than $83 billion dollars.  R&D jobs account for 23% of the biopharmaceutical industry’s workforce.  

We realize the complexity surrounding this proposal and hope that those involved think about all the consequences. These are real people, with real lives, who stand to be affected.  We are talking about job loss leading to higher unemployment rates, decline in morale and outlook on life, struggling families and potential overall collapse.  In that time when these people have little to no access to food, housing and healthcare, who will help them recover? At the Dismass Home of New Hampshire, our patients are our primary concern.  We want to ensure they will have access to new and innovative drugs and treatment options which in turn will help them recover and become a productive member of the community.  We want to continue to provide a safe and secure environment where they can heal, where they grow and where they know they are family.  Think of them as yours!

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