Thursday, 6 January 2011

Life is cheap

There is a row going on at the moment over the supply of drugs to the USA for use in judicial execution. Apparently these drugs are being supplied by a British supplier.

I know there are some big issues here but my eye in the article was drawn by two points.

Firstly one of the objections being raised to the use of these drugs for this purpose is that they are not licensed for this indication. Is it just me or does that argument have a vaguely Monty Python ring to it.

Secondly it is reported that the state of Arizona paid over £4300 for the supply of these drugs. Now I have looked up the cost of these drugs in the BNF, and they are as follows.

Sodium Thiopentone  £3.00 per amp
Pancuronium Bromide  £1.20p per amp
KCl                               ££0.48p per amp.

So by my calculation the cost of drugs is about £5-00 per execution. So how come they spent £4350. There are only two possibilities. The first is that the State of Arizona is planning to execute 870 prisoners. The more likely explanation is that their British supplier is grossly overcharging. Someone in this country is making a killing.

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