Exactly one day after Bernie Sanders threatened to haul the CEO of Moderna up to Capitol Hill to explain why the company was planning to increase the cost of their Covid 19 vaccine, the development of which was in large part funded by taxpayers, by as much as 400% – and one hour after that hearing was scheduled – Moderna announces that there will be no price increase to insurers and the shot will remain free to the uninsured:
“Moderna will keep its COVID vaccine on the market at no cost to consumers, even after the federal government stops paying for it, the company announced Wednesday.
“Everyone in the United States will have access to Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine regardless of their ability to pay,” the company said in a statement.
Last month, the vaccine maker was slammed for reportedly considering a dramatic price increase for the shot, which it had developed with the help of the federal government…
… Among the critics of Moderna’s reported consideration of a price increase — from about $26 a shot to as much as $130 — was Sen. Bernie Sanders, who has long advocated for government-funded health care and alleged the move would result in deaths.
“How many of these Americans will die from COVID 19 as a result of limited access to these lifesaving vaccines?” Sanders, I-Vt., wrote in a January letter to Moderna.
“While nobody can predict the exact figure, the number could well be in the thousands. In the midst of a deadly pandemic, restricting access to this much needed vaccine is unconscionable,” he added.“
The good news was also broken on Twitter by @ More Perfect Union:
We've been talking about this for a while. The public subsidized the development of the vaccine, and it's only right that it should be free to the public. Here's one of our videos breaking it down.https://t.co/g7eygfQl07
— More Perfect Union (@MorePerfectUS) February 15, 2023
I will add some comments, and, keeping in mind that Sanders is not universally popular with democrats, I will try to balance the differing opinions…
Compelled testimony works wonders.
— Richard H. Ebright (@R_H_Ebright) February 16, 2023
So they were just arbitrarily raising the price. There was no need to. Just because they could.
— Anthony 🏴☠️ (@stoptweetingmee) February 15, 2023
It appears so. But if their goal is to recover their costs, a 400% increase seems a bit much.
I’m sure the CEO was deeply terrified to testify after Bernie wagged his finger in his face. It’s literally that easy. Bernie taking credit for outcomes he had no impact over is what Bernie’s strategy has been for 30+ years.
— Jen Psaki’s Head Tilt (@bidonkules) February 16, 2023
Well, the finger wag didn’t hurt.
This is a disastrous attack on the free market. A company can charge what it wants, and no Socialist should stand in the way of that. No amount of lives are worth a company's right to profit.
— Elongated Muskrat (@Joe70224716) February 15, 2023
Ah, fuck the fuck off.
We'll see if they follow through, but good on Sen Sanders for raising a stink
— FunkSands (@funksands) February 16, 2023
I tend to agree.
Whoops Bernie, you caught me with red hands about to sicken/murder people for greed, alright price stays at $0. pic.twitter.com/XQwCZqF6iU
— Kate is still feeling 22 ✊🇺🇦 (@MargaretKate27) February 15, 2023
No matter which side of the Bernie debate you come down on, I hope we can agree that hearings still need to be held to see what can be done to increase the production of the vaccine without bankrupting Moderna, or license it’s production in the other countries.
Too many folks in the developing world still don’t have access to vaccines.