David Mitchell, founder of Patients for Affordable Drugs, about lowering prescription drug prices

Newsmaker Interviews
Thursday, February 1st

David Mitchell, founder of Patients for Affordable Drugs, talks to Frank Andrews about President Trump's promise to lower prescription drug prices in the State of the Union address.


Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

Patients for affordable. Drugs and the founder of it is David Mitchell and he is on the line with us right now David thank you so much JoAnne always short notice me trying to drive you crazy here I'm grateful for your time. Mr. Andrews is very natural healing I think. Well don't call me mister call me frank tot tell me tell me who are you and and why did you do this. Well. And I am not patient within incurable blood cancer called multiple myeloma. And prescription drugs they're keeping me alive literally. Last year the drugs I took the Maine too drugs I took like I have many drugs. Cost 450000. Dollars. It's and my experience as a parent cancer patient has taught me a fundamental factor in. That is drugs don't work if people can't afford them. So. I worked summon help policy through the years and I decided to retire her. And setup an organization. My wife gave me permission. Compatriot for portable drives here building and mobilizing the community of patients across the country. Two advocates for policies to lower drug prices. In less than a year we've collected more than 101000 stories you can see him on our web site. Patience for affordable drugs that work and we've collected more than 24000. Email addresses. And we're using those help educate and mobilize patients on behalf of policies. That low lower drug prices is country and the fact is patients are hurting. They're angry. And they want elected officials to do something now she and the president gets his. And it now we have fed action that matches their rhetoric. And so we are working hard to push for change. At the federal and state alleges levels legislatively. And that we've setup a brand new group yesterday which is what you read about called patients for affordable drugs now. Which is is setup in a way that we can actually engaged in electoral activity. And we plan to engage on behalf of candidates. Who are doing something globe will do something for lower drug prices and oppose those who want. Doubt I'm David when you say that and I know what one of the one of the one of the sections of your of your website is solutions. I mean what would you want these lawmakers to do I mean to attend the problem really be solved because you know when we talked about and after the president mentioned it on the state of the union you know everybody said well the pharmaceutical industries too powerful and they're gonna keep fighting this and nothing will ever happen it is it can something be done really. I would be doing this with whatever time I have left and I didn't think something could be done really. I'm just an example right now there's an important though it's not a big go. But it it would have a real impact because the lower drug prices for people who take some very expensive drugs. It's called to create factor in this under consideration for inclusion. In the February funding deal that they're trying to reached next week and congress. It is a bipartisan piece of legislation. Which sponsors ranging from Chuck Grassley and Mike leave. And Rand Paul and Ted Cruz. Says Democrats like any call the charts. And well it does is it stops a certain form a patent abuse. Says companies use to prevent cheaper generics from coming to market and to extend their monopoly. This is the kind of bipartisan action and that can make a real difference for people and we seem bipartisan bills be enacted at the state level three you know last year. One in Maryland won here and Nevada another in California and there was a piece of legislation in New York too so. What you believe that there is. The pain that people are experiencing cross the country knows no party. And we think that there is bipartisan support for doing something and there are some solutions that are they enjoy a bipartisan sports specific solutions. Now we have we have it we have in our area a large pharmaceutical companies senate he passed tour which makes vaccines they are located in the in the Poconos here and we have lots of people who are are involved in the pharmaceutical industry and remember when we were talking about this and talking about the generics I remember we got a whole bunch of people who sent all know you can't change that patent because it's them keeping the patents that allows them to make the money for a resurgent development is that a bunch of baloney. Paths. Oh. It's absolutely no connection between how much they spend on research and developments. And the prices of drugs the fact is. Big drug companies spend twenty to 40% of every dollar. Marketing and advertising. And they expanded maybe fifteen to eighteen cents research and development the fact is. Like most of the drug as a major new drug to come to market I invented using taxpayer money create a National Institutes of Health. Shed major academic medical senators then when I hear someone say to me is a cancer patient completely dependent on new drugs. For my survival. If you don't pay me what I demand then you're kind of guy that just felt like extortion to me. And the fact is there's plant near Roma. In advertising and marketing enormously outrageous profits. How executive compensation. To lower prices and keep a robust guarantee pipeline which we need. Wow now listen we have we have a lot of people who are very interested in this subject my my my phone lines are going crazy here and people are texting they want more information who what where where should people get involved with your organization how should they get involved and what are you really want them to do. Well they can come to patients for affordable drugs got or there are and we ask them if they will believe their story. When the problems they experienced. Or their family members of experience. He and trying to pay the high prices of drugs. And then delete the very email address and zip code because we are in fact building a community in fact we have organizers out this weekend and Denver. During training for patient advocates and we are going to train patients all over the country to be advocates fear is gone back to where you open the show. The drug industry will spend. Untold millions. To stop legislation that will break their monopoly pricing power. What we have is patients who vote. And we intend to mobilize those voters and so come to our web site. Leave your story can richer email address and zip code we will engage with you and to the extent you care to. We will make you a part of an effort to. Wind. Changes and reforms that will lower drug prices. At that is fantastic and I'm sure I I'm I mentioned to the young lady that called I want to stay in touch with you I wanna continue to be on the story I want to make sure that people are involved. And you know I I hope that your health improves thank you so much David Forbes for being with us. Frank thank you for letting out rock absolutely god bless you my celebrate after their two vice by a.