Big Pharma voted “biggest health care hustler”

From the AFL-CIO’s blog:

In a country where millions go without health insurance — while pharmaceutical company executives sometimes have to struggle to pay for that fifth mortgage in Belize or scrape by to purchase that second corporate jet — Working America members have come up with the worst of the very bad health care hustlers in this nation: Big Pharma … Some 11,000 Working America online voters selected Big Pharma over health insurers and other health providers as the worst hustler…

You may know Big Pharma as the quality folks responsible for driving up the price of prescriptions throughout the 50 states by sucessfully lobbying Congress for a ban on allowing the government to negotiate lower prices for Medicare recipients. Or perhaps for the longtime U.S. ban on allowing Americans to import their prescription drugs from Canada, where they often are half the price of what they cost here.

Today, one of the representatives of Big Pharma, Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, got a visit from some of its Working America friends at the company’s annual meeting in Morristown, N.J. The guests included a “Canadian moose,” which the executives may have glimpsed on their way from the seaweed rap to the deep-tissue massage. But, hey, they can run to the Jacuzzi, but they can’t hide.

Wyeth has implemented a policy of reducing supplies of its drugs to Canadian wholesalers and pharmacies that sell life-saving medicines to Americans who make the cross-border trip because “they are left with no other choice.”

Who said Big Business doesn’t have a heart?

The Health Care Hustle campaign reminded those at the Wyeth stockholder meeting, as well as others across the nation, that our health care system does not have to be this way. It can serve the interests of the American people instead of the American aristocracy.

Let the Wyeths be warned. American workers demand that we fix this broken system and replace it with one that serves all of us.

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