Defending Big Pharma [i.e., Gilead] is a Full-Time Job for PhRMA | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News |

For Lori Reilly, vice president for policy and research at the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), 

her job is to develop federal legislative, regulatory and political strategies. She not only fights criticism of the pharmaceutical industry on multiple fronts, but also promotes healthcare reforms that reflect the industry’s interests.

One current fight involves Gilead’s $1,000-a-pill Hepatitis C drug Sovaldi, which lawmakers, insurance companies and pharmacy benefit management companies say could bankrupt families and the healthcare system.

Even though Gilead isn’t a PhRMA client, the lobby group has come to its defense, saying Sovaldi might sound pricey but in the long run it actually saves money.

While Sovaldi may cost $84,000 or more for an individual patient’s 12-week treatment, Reilly argues it will save money by decreasing the need for liver transplants for patients whose organs fail.