Monday , July 6 2020
Home / CEPR Blog / Why Should Anyone Care About Paying Big Bucks for Vaccine Government Funded?

Why Should Anyone Care About Paying Big Bucks for Vaccine Government Funded?

Summary:
The New York Times ran a piece on the second round of government funding for the development of a coronavirus vaccine. The piece only mentions in passing the issue raised by some Democrats in Congress about the price of any vaccine that gets developed through this funding. This is probably too simple for the NYT reporters and editors to understand, but the reason the government grants drug companies patent monopolies is to give them a way to recover their research costs. In this case, according to the piece, the government has already paid .2 billion for research. The article makes clear that the government will be putting up considerably more money. This is a huge amount to pay for research. At no point does the piece give any indication of how much of their own money, if any, the

Topics:
Dean Baker considers the following as important: , ,

This could be interesting, too:

Dean Baker writes Profit Shares Soared After the Great Recession: News You Can’t Get at the New York Times

Dean Baker writes The Dow and Government-Granted Patent Monopolies

Dean Baker writes NYT Argues Workers Should Get More, but Gets Some Important Facts Wrong

Dean Baker writes The Washington Post is Worried Its Path of Structuring Globalization to Redistribute Income Upward Could be Jeopardized

The New York Times ran a piece on the second round of government funding for the development of a coronavirus vaccine. The piece only mentions in passing the issue raised by some Democrats in Congress about the price of any vaccine that gets developed through this funding.

This is probably too simple for the NYT reporters and editors to understand, but the reason the government grants drug companies patent monopolies is to give them a way to recover their research costs. In this case, according to the piece, the government has already paid $2.2 billion for research. The article makes clear that the government will be putting up considerably more money.

This is a huge amount to pay for research. At no point does the piece give any indication of how much of their own money, if any, the companies are putting up. Fans of the free market might be saying that if the government is paying the money, why on earth should the drug companies then have a patent monopoly?

But, reporters don’t seem interested in asking questions like this when the beneficiaries of government handouts are rich people (generally white). They generally are far more concerned about a few hundred dollars that might improperly be paid out to someone on food stamps rather than the hundreds of billions that the government hands out every year with its patent and copyright monopolies.

The post Why Should Anyone Care About Paying Big Bucks for Vaccine Government Funded? appeared first on Center for Economic and Policy Research.

Dean Baker
I am a senior economist at the Center for Economic and Policy Research (@ceprdc). I also run the blog Beat the Press (@beat_the_press)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *