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Mark Cuban launches online pharmacy that offers more than 100 generic drugs at affordable prices; sells leukemia drug imatinib at $47 a month instead of the $9,657 retail price | Tech News | Startups News

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Imagine you have to choose between feeding your family or buying a life-saving drug? That’s the choice average Americans are confronted with every day. In just a decade, U.S. spending on prescription drugs has grown rapidly from $783 per capita in 2007 to $1,025 per capita in 2017.

For decades, the US Congress has tried to lower the cost of drugs but failed due to a lack of political will and influence from the pharmaceutical companies. In recent years, the prices of prescription drugs continue to outpace inflation. For example, a typical older American spends more on prescription drugs per month than their average annual income.

Now billionaire investor Mark Cuban is on a mission to help give millions of Americans access to generic drugs at affordable prices. On Thursday, Mark launched an online pharmacy called costplusdrugs.com. The platform offers more than 100 generic drugs at an affordable price with the goal of being “radically transparent” in its price negotiations with drug companies.

Unlike the regular pharmacies that charge arms and legs, Mark’s new online pharmacy eliminates middlemen and no price games.  All drugs are priced at cost plus 15% and the site passes on the huge drug savings to the users. In a statement on the site, Mark said: “Everyone should have safe, affordable medicines with transparent prices.”

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For example, Cuban prices the leukemia drug imatinib at $47 a month, compared to the $9,657 retail price. Mesalamine (Canasa) also costs $36 per month, compared to a retail price of $959. Below is a screenshot of other drugs listed on the site.

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In a post on Twitter, Mark tweeted:

“If you are looking for lower pricing on your generic drug purchases, go to http://costplusdrugs.com and sign up ! All drugs are priced at cost plus 15% ! Sign up and share your thoughts and experiences with us!”

The prices of drugs have gone through the roof in recent years. As AARP Dena Bunis who covers Medicare and health policy and reports on federal legislation affecting the 50-plus population noted, a typical older American spends more on prescription drugs per month than their average annual income.

“It’s unfair that drug prices keep rising, even for medications that have been on the market for decades,” says Leigh Purvis, director of health care costs and access at AARP and coauthor of the reports. According to the June 7 report, the total retail prescription drug costs for the typical older American who takes four to five prescription drugs per month would be $31,000 per year — more than the $29,650 average annual income for Medicare beneficiaries.

 

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