June 29, 2020 Press Releases

Statement on Gilead’s Remdesivir Price

WASHINGTON, DC — In response to Gilead’s pricing announcement for remdesivir, Patients For Affordable Drugs Executive Director Ben Wakana issued the following statement:

“Today’s news proves that Gilead aims to profiteer off the COVID-19 pandemic. Gilead will realize profits far in excess of its cost to develop and produce a drug that has yet to demonstrate it will save lives. Gilead’s price for remdesivir shows once again that we can’t trust Big Pharma to act responsibly — even in the face of a global pandemic.”


  • Gilead announced Monday that it will sell a five-day course of remdesivir for $2,340 per patient at the global government rate and $3,120 for U.S. private insurers.
  • Research showed remdesivir decreased the number of days patients with severe COVID-19 needed to stay in the hospital from 15 to 11 days. Remdesivir did not demonstrate a decreased rate of mortality in COVID-19 patients.
  • For comparison, a low-dose steroid treatment, dexamethasone, showedpromise for combating severe COVID-19 cases and reducing potential mortality rates. The drug costs less than $1 per day.
  • The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases funded the trialthat showed that remdesivir helps to treat COVID-19 symptoms. It expects to spend a minimum of $30 million on remdesivir studies by the end of 2020. Additionally, the U.S. government funded initial research and development for the drug to combat the Ebola crisis.
  • Today, a new report from Patients For Affordable Drugs found that pharmaceutical companies increased the price of 245 drugs between January 20 (first U.S. case of COVID-19) and June 20. More than 75 percent of the drugs directly relate to the COVID-19 crisis. The average price increase was 23.8 percent.


Patients For Affordable Drugs is the only independent national patient organization focused exclusively on achieving policy changes to lower the price of prescription drugs.