Pills Scott Barbour/Getty Images

Mengatasi Hambatan Pasar terhadap Antibiotik Baru

LONDON – Dari sudut pandang beberapa investor, manajemen finansial yang bijak yang dilakukan perusahaan untuk meningkatkan harga sahamnya adalah hal yang baik. Berdasarkan logika sederhana ini maka seharusnya kita tidak merasa prihatin akan industri obat-obatan ketika harga saham firma obat-obatan terdorong bukan karena temuan-temuan baru melainkan hasil dari manuver finansial seperti pembelian kembali saham atau taxinversion.

Tetapi industri obat-obatan berbeda dari industri lainnya. Di dalam sejarah industri ini telah menyediakan inovasi medis yang penting bagi kemampuan masyarakat untuk mengatasi penyakit sehingga secara intrinsik industri ini terikat dengan kepentingan publik. Terlebih lagi, meskipun pasien adalah konsumen, pembeli yang sesungguhnya sering kali adalah pemerintah. Bahkan di negara seperti Amerika Serikat, akun pembeli publik setidaknya berjumlah 40% dari pasar obat keras atau obat yang hanya dapat dibeli dengan resep.

Pemerintah juga membiayai banyak penelitian yang melandasi keuntungan industri. Pemerintah AS adalah penyandang dana terbesar untuk penelitian dan pengembangan medis; secara global, pembayar pajak mendanai sepertiga pengeluaran penelitian kesehatan. Oleh sebab itu, tidaklah mengherankan ketika pembuatan kebijakan berkeras agar upaya industri untuk menghasilkan inovasi harus diarahkan ke bidang yang menyediakan keuntungan terbesar bagi para pembayar pajak dan pasien, dari pada ditujukan bagi keuntungan yang paling menguntungkan bagi industri dalam jangka pendek, misalnya melalui manuver finansial.

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