Where Aspirins Cost $15
It costs 10 euros — about $15 — for a package of 50 aspirins at the local drugstore in Bonn, Germany! What an outrage. Why so expensive? I could get a bottle of generic aspirins at home for well below $5 for 100!
Looking around I also notice, as the photo suggests, a remarkable plethora of pharmacies (apotheken). With few exceptions, those are the only places allowed to sell most drugs, many of which would be over-the-counter in the U.S.
Worse still, so people tell me, each apotheke has a prescribed (no pun intended) area in which no other apotheke can locate. These are classic local monopolies, so it’s not surprising that the prices are astronomical.
Moreover, the geographic restrictions produce clustering at the intersections of territories — just as we often see three or four gas stations on a busy corner.
The solution, in this land where aspirin was invented, is to remove the restrictions on location and on selling most drugs. That is starting to happen, but it probably won’t occur rapidly enough to lessen any of my headaches — especially those induced by ridiculously high aspirin prices!