Surprise, big pharma spends far more money on drug peddling than for research, something not too surprising given just how much money these companies make due to the fact government doesn't regulate or force drug companies to reduce prices by demanding proof of new drugs’ value in comparison to existing ones and sometimes refusing to cover medicines they doubt are worth the cost.
So, while the US spends the most money on drugs that big pharma states, is necessary in order to cover the cost of research for creating such drugs, reality shows that this is simply not the case if the Washington Post's article rings true.
Prescription drugs are a massive market: Americans spent $329.2 billion on prescription drugs in 2013. That works out to about $1,000 per person in the U.S., as John Oliver pointed out in his show on Sunday night.
Oliver also mentioned that nine out of 10 big pharmaceutical companies spend more on marketing than on research. León Markovitz of Dadaviz found and graphed those figures from healthcare research firm GlobalData in the graphic (above) The amounts spent on sales and marketing are shown in orange, while the amounts spent on research and development are in blue.
The biggest spender, Johnson & Johnson, shelled out $17.5 billion on sales and marketing in 2013, compared with $8.2 billion for R&D. In the top 10, only Roche spent more on R&D than on sales and marketing.
Thanks Henry, I needed that. :)
Addendum: Here's a price comparison of what the US pays vs countries in Europe.