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David Mitchell, the founder of Patients for Affordable Drugs Action

Mitchell says his cancer has relapsed

Activist spent $3.3 million attacking Hugin on drug prices

By David Wildstein, February 07 2019 8:18 pm

The founder of a grassroots group that spent millions attack Bob Hugin for raising the price of a life saving cancer drug says that his own cancer has relapsed.

David Mitchell is the founder of Patients for Affordable Drugs Action, which spent nearly $3.3 million on TV ads bashing Hugin’s tenure as the Celgene CEO,  the New Jersey-based pharmaceutical company.

“My cancer mutates and finds its way around drugs. It wasn’t a question of if I would relapse — it was only a question of when,” Mitchell said in an online post.  “For the last two years life was predictable. Treatment every four weeks and few side effects. Now, the safety of an effective treatment is slipping away.”

Mitchell said during the 2018 campaign that he took Revlimid, the drug Hugin’s company manufactured.

TV ads Mitchell’s PAC ran accused Hugin of making more than $140 million off the sale of Revlimid and doubled the price three times, even as patients were going broke paying for the drug.

“As I travel down this uncertain road, I am reminded of the brave patients standing beside me,” Mitchell said.  “Patients across the country have lost their homes, skipped doses, and faced agonizing choices of how to put food on the table. In spite of that adversity, they are coming together to fight for change. And I feel so grateful to be part of that community.”

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