FROM Katie Thomas
Can politics cure the high cost of drugs? EpiPens are the poster child for vast increases in the price of familiar medications. Many people carry them for emergency treatment of allergic reactions that can be life threatening. So, when the Mylan Company raised the price of two EpiPens from $100 $614 it made big news. Turns out, it's the tip of the iceberg. Drug prices are on the rise and desperately ill people are often those hit by bills they never expected. Other countries have established price controls for life-or-death medications, but America's system is so complex it defies understanding. Drug and insurance companies, hospitals and doctors engage in secret negotiations, while various middlemen get cuts of the action. And, who's paying for those expensive ads on TV? Patients. Are the presidential campaigns offering any realistic solutions?
Shoddy Practices at Big Drug Makers So-called "compounding pharmacies" regulated by the states have been taking heat since the recent outbreak of meningitis. Today's New York Times reports that one-third of the drug manufacturing industry overseen by the Food and Drug Administration is off line because of "quality issues." Katie Thomas covers the business of healthcare for the New York Times .
Terrorism and tweets, hate speech and murder Just days before an election, Britain is coping with a rash of deadly terrorism, and Prime Minister Theresa May is on the defensive. And again today, President Trump has tweeted criticism of the Mayor of London. Later, a double murder in Portland, Oregon has revealed the ugly past of a supposedly “progressive” city. One immediate question: is “hate speech” protected by the First Amendment?
Who's to blame for the opioid crisis? Some of the lawyers who took on Big Tobacco are now going after Big Pharma. It’s all about the deadly epidemic of opioid use. Are the drug companies to blame? What about the users? Later, on today’s Talking Point: making sense of Britain’s upset election.
Janesville and the American Dream Janesville, Wisconsin is the hometown of Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan. But he couldn’t prevent the closing of the General Motors factory after 100 years. On this Memorial Day rebroadcast of To the Point, we hear what’s happened to what once was a model of American middle-class unity.