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After weeks of anticipation, Gilead Sciences (GILD) finally disclosed the pricing for its remdesivir experimental Covid-19 treatment. But while the number is less than what both investors and a cost-effectiveness watchdog had been expecting, the drug holds the potential to generate plenty of sales. But whether it can generate huge profits is open to debate.

The drug maker will be charging $390 for a vial, which works out to $2,340 per patient for a five-day treatment course, although insurers in the U.S. will pay 33% more, or $3,120. More than 120 low and lower-middle-income countries will get the drug at greatly reduced prices, thanks to licensing and production deals that Gilead struck with several generic manufacturers.


In explaining its pricing, Gilead maintained that, if remdesivir resulted in earlier hospital discharges, the drug could save about $12,000 per patient. In fact, the U.S. price is notably lower than the $4,580 to $5,080 range for a treatment course that was considered cost effective by the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review, a nonprofit that assesses the value of medicines.

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  • Excellent article Ed especially being able to include all the comments from top tier Gilead covering analysts.

    One big unknown I feel is the receptivity of the American people fir the eventual vaccine, regardless of how effective it is from the clinical trial results. What is the % of eligible Americans actually getting vaccinated for influenza during the flu season?
    It’a a a totally different scenario but I typically don’t bother getting flu shots unless I have some confidence in its efficacy despite my PCP’s strong suggestion to get one. I much prefer him to prescribe Tamiflu of zi am exposed to someone I suspect to be suck from flu, then perhaps cough suppressant and azithromycin if I end up with clear URI symptoms. So most likely I would hesitate for any Covid-19 vaccine and try to get remdesivir to slow down Covid-19 then try to get dexamethsdone for cytokine storm.

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