Merck and River Blindness

1810 WordsJul 10, 20138 Pages
Merck and River Blindness (Onchocerciasis) In understanding the decision Merck made to donate medicines, we need to start by understanding the motivations and core values behind the company that undertook the actions. We can get some insight into these by examining and understanding their company mission statement: The mission of Merck is to provide society with superior products and services, innovations, and solutions that improve the quality of life and satisfy customer needs-to provide employees with meaningful work and advancement opportunities and investors with a superior rate of return. Analysis of the mission statement identifies several Merck stakeholders and what Merck envisions for each: 1. Community: to provide…show more content…
If his company had not acted on his information, after he challenged all the way to the upper most board member or investor community, he would have been morally obligated to take his information to another company or to the public for others to develop. Because the company is donating these drugs and has made the donation public, it should follow that the consumers for their other drugs understand that there is some residual increase in costs to them for other drugs in order to pay for those donations. From a business point of view, Merck is probably taking every possible measure to reduce the overhead costs of production but at the end of the day, all they are really donating are the compounds used to formulate the drugs, whatever minimal packaging has been the least costly and most effective, and a willingness to accept possible future liability if their drug backfires on them with unforeseen side effects. It would be unreasonable to assume that they will operate at a complete loss for this donation. My personal reaction to having to contribute towards or pay for some part of the drug would be feeling as if I am doing my part in the eradication of river blindness by using Merck drugs. If I were Merck, I would even market my other products with that information so that consumers can also share in the sense of good that they provide by using Merck drugs. I don’t think there would be anything morally wrong with capitalizing on this
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