Horrifying Slice of Life Under Corporate Medicine

03/13/2006 08:05 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Here's a little item from (3/12/06) that slipped by me -- but my friend Ann Banks flagged it:

"Last year, Genentech raised the price of Tarceva, a lung-cancer drug, by about 30 percent, to $32,000 for a year's treatment. In an interview last month, Dr. Susan Desmond-Hellmann, the president of product development for Genentech, said that the company had raised Tarceva's price because the drug works better than Genentech had anticipated. 'Tarceva was a more powerful and more active agent than what we understood at the time of launch, and so more valuable,' she said."

I can't do better than quote Ann on this one:

So "I guess the lower-priced drugs are the ones that don't work?"

Just think about that one...