Puerto Rico Freezes Condom Prices To Keep Companies From Profiteering From Zika

During a media briefing at the Governor’s mansion earlier this month Nery Adames Soto, Puerto Rico’s Secretary of the Department of Consumer Affairs, announced that his agency would temporarily be declaring condom price-gouging illegal. To help prevent the spread of the Zika virus, prophylactics were added to a list price frozen products enforced by DACO. Raising the cost of mosquito repellent, window screens, larvicides and other mosquito-killing products is also currently against the law.

According to government data, public health officials have found more than 60 Zika cases in Puerto Rico. Additional data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that as of February 19, eight out of nine reported Zika cases in the U.S. territory were associated with travel. DACO’s Adames moved to freeze the price of condoms due to general concerns about people passing the virus through sexual contact, as well as concerns that it could quickly spread to other areas.

Store owners may be fined up to $10,000 for violating the price freeze, and residents are encouraged report any price-gouging on the DACO website or Facebook page.

“Every local store, gas station or business that sells these items must know that DACO will be knocking on your doors and closely monitoring this, allowing the citizens to protect themselves adequately because now is not the time to raise prices,” Adames warns.

We should’ve had this guy on the Martin Shkreli case all along.

[NPR]