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Do better cancer drugs cost more?


To quote myself and colleagues in JAMA Internal Medicine:

Among the drugs approved on the basis of response rate, there was only a weak correlation between cost and the magnitude of the response rate gain; the same was true in the categories of drugs approved on the basis of PFS and OS gains. This suggests that cancer drugs are priced based predominantly on what the market will bear. Correcting this trend is vital for the solvency of health care and pharmaceutical development.

The following caveats apply:

But if you are a medical student or a resident and want to do some important work while buffing up your CV, feel free to copy our methods and apply them to other areas of medicine! Something like this for cardiology or endocrinology would do a whole lot more good than yet another case report of something presenting as something else.

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