Resource allocation, scarcity, pricing, and stakeholder involvement are recurring issues in healthcare. The
treatment for HIV discussed in this case is no longer groundbreaking; the lessons remain salient. A current
example is Gilead’s hepatitis C drug, Sovaldi, that costs $1,000 per pill, or more than $84,000 per patient in a
course of treatment. Demand for Sovaldi is high, but its cost causes access problems for many patients. How
should a costly, scarce resource be allocated? Does Gilead have a responsibility to increase access to Sovaldi?
Merck’s Crixivan offers insight into such issues.
Expert Solution Preview
As a medical professor responsible for creating assignments and assessing students, I understand that resource allocation and access to healthcare are important issues in the healthcare industry. In this scenario, we will discuss the allocation of costly, scarce resources and whether pharmaceutical companies have a responsibility to increase access to their medications.
Resource allocation in healthcare can be a significant challenge, especially when a scarce resource is expensive. In the case of Gilead’s hepatitis C drug Sovaldi, the high cost of treatment raises questions about access to treatment. While demand for the medication is high, the price tag creates a barrier for some patients who may not be able to afford it.
As the manufacturer of this medication, Gilead does have a responsibility to increase access to Sovaldi, especially for patients who need it but cannot afford it. Access to healthcare is a fundamental right, and drug companies must prioritize access to their medications for those who need them.
One approach to increase access to costly medications is through government intervention to negotiate lower prices or provide subsidies for low-income patients. By reducing the price tag, more patients can afford to purchase the medication and receive the treatment they need.
In conclusion, the high cost of healthcare resources like Sovaldi and other expensive pharmaceuticals highlights the importance of addressing access issues. Pharmaceutical companies like Gilead have a responsibility to increase access to their medications, and policymakers must work to ensure that costly treatments are accessible to all patients in need.