Have Sanctions on Iran Significantly Affected the Availability of Lifesaving Drugs?

Have sanctions on Iran significantly affected the availability of lifesaving drugs?

After a concussion received two months ago, Secretary of State, Hillary Rodham Clinton, was hospitalized at New York-Presbyterian. During her hospitalization, doctors found a blood clot for which Mrs. Clinton was given a blood thinner and sent on her way. It is a good thing that she received treatment instead of being declined for not having insurance. Fair or not, people around the world cannot get their needed drugs because they are not available, nor would they be affordable. People have fallen victim to the political fights between leaders and suffer the consequences, which are far from rational.

Our Iranian fellows need to be treated with some kind of blood thinners or other kind of crucial drugs which have been imported to Iran for many years; however, people either cannot find or buy them since they are prohibitively expensive and they are not available on the Iranian market, at least, not any more. As of now, the sanctions imposed on Iran have significantly affected the accessibility and availability of lifesaving drugs needed for life-threatening diseases including cancer, hemophilia.

According to one Iranian trade newspaper, Tejarat, as many as 50 different drugs, which are not made in Iran, have become rare as a result of sanctions. Not to mention, domestically made drugs have also become scarce; hence, some raw materials desperately need to be imported.

In addition, the price of drugs have sharply risen to a point that they can paralyze patients, financially. The ultimate example is that an injection for cancer is now 50,000,000 IRI, being equal to 5,000,000 USD, which is super expensive. By drawing an analogy over the past three years, one can draw the conclusion that costs are almost two and half times more expensive than prior to the time before sanctions were put on Iran.

The patients are at a point that they prefer to die than to spend money on their treatment, especially since they can barely survive on their low salaries, let alone pay for highly expensive injections.Have sanctions on Iran significantly affected the availability of lifesaving drugs?

The number of people with cancer, the third most life-threatening disease among Iranian people, has ratcheted up nearly 30 percent. Who is going to help Iranians? Why should people get afflicted as a result of sheer political conflicts between the Iranian and American leaders? The country whose president claims that he, Barak Obama, does whatever he can to help people from around the world lead good lives is now destroying people’s lives over political disagreements. What sin have the Iranian people committed? Who is going to make things right? The ultimate goal behind these sanctions is to stop Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.

US leaders proscribe other countries from making any kind of nuclear weapons while giving itself the right to make hazardous bombs. I don’t want to say that we have or don’t have the right to make nuclear weapons! I want to say that no one has the right to make anyone suffer or prevent their fellow humans from having a normal life. American leaders themselves are perhaps arguably engaged in crime if they continue with sanctions that prevent vital drugs from being exported to Iran.


By Mohammad Reza Najafian Jaci

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