Designer Drugs are on Their Way

The case for them is strong:

Experts say that most drugs, whatever the disease, work for only about half the people who take them. Not only is much of the nation's approximately $300 billion annual drug spending wasted, but countless patients are being exposed unnecessarily to side effects.

So why not get a drug tailored to your genetic makeup?

The hurdles include drug makers, which can be reluctant to develop or encourage tests that may limit the use of their drugs. Insurers may not pay for tests, which can cost up to a few thousand dollars.

Also, lots of things can go wrong. Lots of money can be wasted. [link]



Comments (3)

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  1. Ken says:

    And once we have Daschle’s version of a NICE commision, insurance will never pay for them.

  2. Larry C, says:

    Ken, I don’t know what NICE would mean for private insurance, but it’s very unlikely that Medicare patients will get designer drugs.

  3. Bret says:

    Personalized drugs will reduce the costs of using drugs that don’t work, or don’t work very well. But it’s hard for me to imagine that overall health care costs will go down.

    This is likely to be another innovation that adds on net to health care spencing.