(Zoran Ivanovich/iStock)

The case detailed in the June 11 Business article “Max’s best hope costs $750,000” was yet another example of how the pharmaceutical industry continues to put profits above morals and humanity.

The pharmaceutical industry claims it must charge high prices on these lifesaving drugs to recover research and development costs, when much of these costs are funded by the government. Research and development costs are a part of the business pharmaceutical companies are in and should have little, if any, bearing on the ultimate price of a drug. What they charge for these specialty drugs is profit-motivated price gouging, plain and simple.

The price for lifesaving drugs should be the actual cost of producing a drug and a reasonable profit. Former Alaska governor and Republican vice-presidential nominee Sarah Palin once talked about “death panels.” The pharmaceutical industry has de facto become just that, as many people with serious illnesses cannot afford the medicines to cure them or enhance their quality of life.

Kim Hemphill, South Riding