Moderna Stock Fell After CEO Bancel Told Lawmakers COVID Vaccination Price Rises Are Justified

Moderna Stock

Moderna Stock (NASDAQ:MRNA)

Stephane Bancel, the Chief Executive Officer of Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA), testified before the United States Senate on Wednesday that the biotechnology company’s plan to quadruple the price of its COVID-19 vaccine is reasonable because it will lose economies of scale in May when the government will stop purchasing the vaccine. As a result, Moderna stock declined.

On May 11, the public health emergency that the federal government declared due to COVID will end, and the vaccinations will then be offered on the commercial market.

The CEO of Bancel and his counterpart at Pfizer, Albert Bourla, have come under criticism for their intentions to significantly increase the pricing of their COVID vaccinations if they are made available on the private market. Both businesses have indicated that they want to set the price of a single shot at up to $130.

The Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, which Sen. Bernie Sanders chairs, is organizing the hearing on Wednesday (I-Vt.).

Bancel said that he anticipates a decline in demand of 90% once the government injections are sold on the private market, which will result in the loss of economies of scale. Consequently, the vaccine will be made available not in 10-dose vials as it was when the government was purchasing it but rather in single-dose vials or syringes that have already been pre-filled.

Sanders pointed out that the National Institutes of Health (NIH), which contributed financing to developing the vaccine manufactured by Moderna and used in conjunction with Operation Warp Speed, should have been mentioned at any point in the opening statement made by the executive.

It is generally accepted, despite Moderna’s desire to rewrite history, that the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Moderna worked jointly to develop this vaccine, as Sanders explained.

Bancel refuted Sanders’ claim that the NIH had a role in developing their vaccine. He said that the corporation sold the vaccine to the federal government at a discount of $2.9 billion even though the government did not ask for the reduction.

Featured Image: Megapixl © Ralfliebhold

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