Turing Pharmaceuticals is defending its 5,000-percent increase in the price of a popular medicine. Rough Cut (no reporter narration)
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) Officials at Turing Pharmaceuticals are defending a dramatic increase in the price of a drug used to treat infectious diseases. Turing purchased the rights to Daraprim in August and promptly raised the price from $13.50 per tablet, to $750 per tablet. Daraprim is the only medication effective for treating toxoplasmosis, an infection that can cause birth defects. It is also used to treat HIV infections, cancer and malaria. Turing CEO Martin Shkreli told "CBS This Morning" that the previous price of the drug was undervalued in the past. "If there's a company that was selling an Aston Martin at the price of a bicycle, and we buy that company and we ask to charge Toyota prices, I don't think that should be a crime," said Shkreli. "We're simply charging the right price that the markets missed, the prior owner missed, and we're doing something very good with those profits, we're putting them right back in the patients' hands." Infectious disease specialists have asked the company to reconsider the price hike. In a letter to Turing officials, they said the increase is "unsustainable for the health care system."