Billionaire Opens Online Pharmacy With ‘No Middlemen’—Sells $2,500 Meds For $17
By Alexa Heah, 24 Jan 2022
‘Shark Tank’ Billionaire Mark Cuban has started an online pharmacy that offers customers with over 100 generic drugs at more affordable prices, promising to be “radically transparent” in its negotiations with drug manufacturers.
According to Forbes, Mark Cuban Cost Plus Drug Company (MCCPDC) works by bypassing the middlemen—such as regular pharmacies—to bring generic medications to customers at cost-saving prices.
A quick glance at the MCCPDC website shows staggering differences between the usual prices of the drugs and how much Cuban is offering them for. It hopes to combat the ever-increasing cost of life-saving drugs, which undoubtedly prices out individuals who need it.
For example, Mesalamine, the generic version of Canasa, which is used to treat ulcerative colitis, costs just US$36.90 on the platform, whereas it would normally set a patient back by US$959.10. Also hard to miss is Imatinib, which MCCPDC advertises at the very front, supposedly sells for $17.10—versus the normal retail price of $2,502.20.
As per Fortune, in a bid for more transparency, the site discloses that it sells the generic medications at a 15% markup, with customers paying US$3 for the pharmacist fee and US$5 for delivery.
“There are numerous bad actors in the pharmaceutical supply chain preventing patients from getting affordable medicines. The markup on potentially life-saving drugs that people depend on is a problem that can’t be ignored,” said the site’s CEO, Alex Oshmyansky.
“It is imperative that we take action and help expand access to these medications for those who them most,” he said.
At the moment, the platform does not accept insurance payments and requires patients to pay upfront in cash, though it says that overall, customers still save compared to shopping at a local pharmacy.
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