One of the most driving forces for increasing health care costs in the United States is the cost of pharmaceuticals. If you compare drug prices in the U.S. with the U.K. E.U., Mexico or South American countries there is a great disparity.
Increases in drug prices cannot be compared using overall global prices when there is actually much price variation when looking at specific drug classes. There are large fluctuations in price when pharma companies are merged, or purchased by venture companies who anticipate great demand for a product. Some well-known brand pharmaceutical manufacturers have disappeared from the market place. Not all companies make huge profits. Some companies barely make a profit, if any.
There are many orphan drugs on which companies lose fortunes. Then there are companies in the news which make huge profits. such as Purdue, the manufacturer of Oxycontin.