Martin Shkreli is back, despite the fact that he took a serious public relations and financial beating when he raised the price of a drug, often used by HIV patients, an astonishing 5000 percent. He’s not sorry, though. In fact, during a speech at the Forbes Healthcare Summit this month, he said:
I would have raised prices higher,” Shkreli vowed on Thursday, after being asked how he would re-do the past three months. “That’s my duty…My shareholders expect me to make the most profit. That’s the ugly, dirty truth.”
“I’m going to maximize profits,” Shkreli added later. “That’s what people [in healthcare] are afraid to say.
He’s doing it again, and this time with a medication that’s often used by poor people. The drug is called Benznidazole and it treats Chagas disease, which comes from parasites and can cause serious heart problems.
Chagas disease is most common among the poor in Latin America. The parasites generally grow in the cracks of poorly-constructed homes.
Benznidazole is almost 100 percent effective, which to Shkreli, means he’s not charging enough for it, so he raised the price from between $50 and $100 for treatment to $60,000 to nearly $100,000 per treatment, for people who live in poorly built shacks.
Former Obama advisor David Axelrod called Shkreli out, and Shkreli, who could easily be BFFs with Donald Trump, responded with no remorse whatsoever:
Shkreli, apparently, comes from the same school of profit before people as Nestle CEO Peter Brabeck-Letmanthe, who famously stated that “water is not a human right, should be privatized.”
Perhaps they can get together and charge $5,000 for a bottle of water.
As for Shkreli, you’ll be glad to know he spends his money on things that will really help people, like spending $2 million on a one-of-a-kind album from the Wu-Tang Clan. So, yes, he buys music right out from under people’s ears. At least no one will die from that deal. You can’t say the same for people who need his drugs.
If you have a strong stomach, here’s where he spoke at the Forbes Healthcare Summit:
Featured image via video screen capture.