Billionaire Mark Cuban launches online pharmacy to lower prescription drug prices

Billionaire Mark Cuban launches online pharmacy to lower prescription drug prices
Billionaire Mark Cuban launches online pharmacy to lower prescription drug prices. Via: AP

Billionaire philanthropist and Dallas Mavericks owner, Mark Cuban, has opened an online pharmacy aimed at tackling the problem of skyrocketing drug prices.

The Mark Cuban Cost Plus Drug Company supplies generic drugs and negotiates prices directly with manufacturers in order to cut down on customer costs. The company set up a pharmacy benefit manager several weeks prior to launching the pharmacy site. PBMs are corporate entities that interact directly with health insurance agencies, drug manufactures, and pharmacies which gives them considerable influence over drug prices.

“The markup on potentially lifesaving drugs that people depend on is a problem that can’t be ignored,” Alex Oshmyansky, CEO of Cuban’s online pharmacy, said in a statement. “It is imperative that we take action and help expand access to these medications for those who need them most.”

As of January 2021, the website offers 100 drugs aimed at treating a wide variety of illnesses including asthma, hypertension, and diabetes.

Atorvastatin (a generic version of the cholesterol medicine Lipitor) usually sells for $55.08 but is available on the website for $3.60. A 30-day supply of the cancer medication, Imatinib, costs $17.10 from Cost Plus Drug Company, while its average cost from other pharmacies is $2,502.60.

At this time, the company does not accept insurance, but reassures customers that their prices are still below what an insurance patient pays at an average pharmacy.

Mark Cuban’s efforts represent a small but important step towards making necessary medical care affordable for everyone.

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