My name is Savanna and I am a college student in Nacogdoches, Texas. I suffer from severe allergic asthma as well as psoriatic arthritis with spondylitis and enthesitis. Suffice it to say, affordable medication is paramount to my well-being as a patient with a complex medical history.
I currently have health insurance through my parents that brings my out-of-pocket payments for my many prescriptions down to $1,766 a year. When I age out of my parents’ plan, I don’t know if I will have a job that has sufficient health insurance options for me. The cash price for my medications is a little over $152,000 per year. Maintaining access to the same level of coverage is vital for me, and it’s hard to deal with the fear of losing that coverage when I know drug corporations could simply lower the list price of their drugs and I wouldn’t have to live in fear. They should take all the money they spend on advertising and instead use it to make drugs more affordable for people like me.
Having two of the top ten most expensive medical conditions in the U.S., I will have to make major life decisions because of the cost of my drugs. These decisions range from which jobs I seek to whether or not I can afford certain medications or new therapies. For these reasons, I would love to see more regulation and transparency around the issue of drug pricing.
Our current system of co-pay coupons and patient assistant programs isn’t ideal, as there are plenty of patients slipping through the cracks and going without their medication. These programs shouldn’t be necessary. Pharmaceutical corporations shouldn’t be price gouging patients in the first place, because there’s no point in having miracle drugs if the patients that need them can’t afford to access them.