The Real Drug Problem

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Editor:

The following letter was mailed (yes, the old-fashioned way) to our U.S. Senators Jon Kyl and John McCain on March 12, 2011. After three months, I’m still waiting for a response from either.

Dear Senator,

I’m very concerned and upset about the FDA and the pharmaceutical industry and request hearings on their current practices. Please let me explain.

I’m a chronic gout sufferer. If you’ve ever known the pain of a gout attack, you’ll understand. If not, please take my word that it is excruciatingly painful.

One of the medications I use to combat gout flares is colchicine. It was in common use to treat gout several decades before the establishment of the FDA. Until the end of 2010, I was able to purchase colchicine at my local Walmart pharmacy for $12 for 90 tablets — about 13 cents each.

However, the FDA, in their subservience to the pharmaceutical industry, has given one manufacturer an exclusive right to market this medication for three years. This pharmaceutical company now has a monopoly on this drug and is screwing people like me by increasing their stated retail price per tablet to $4.50 each. Now, Walmart will sell me 60 tablets for $333.84 — about $5.56 each — a price increase of over 40 times! My suffering is now both physical and

financial.

This is the financial rape of the people that need this medication. Please do what you can as my elected representative to stop this practice. It is truly immoral and we should all be ashamed. Please stand up for me and many thousands like me.

Larry Brophy

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