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the relationship between the medical community and big pharma


Pharmaceutical Money

“I hate to ruin the fun, but practicing physicians are influenced far more by guidelines, esteemed academic physicians, and opinion pieces in prestigious journals than we are by a deli platter and a smiling drug rep. We look to the world of academic medicine because, well, where else can we turn? Pharmaceutical companies know this and have worked hard to sway the leadership. Now the question comes up if we can trust the data that the leadership relies on. One wonders how deep the deception goes. In fact, the heavy influence of pharmaceutical dollars inspired the former editor-in-chief of the New England Journal of Medicine, Dr. Marcia Angell, to conclude [almost two decades ago], ‘It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published, or to rely on the judgment of trusted physicians or authoritative medical guidelines.'”  From Dr. Daniela Drake’s February 15, 2014 article in The Daily Beast (Big Pharma Is America’s New Mafia).  I’ve shown you numerous times how the “guideline” thing is working out (HERE).

I’ve been saying it for a long time — for the most part, doctors aren’t their own men and women any more.  Why not?  Because they almost all work for “The Man” (around here that would be Cox or St. Johns Mercy).  But even beyond that, they work for the drug companies.  Think I’m exaggerating or being harsh?  Take a look at some of the shocking statistics in the video.

Watch as comedian, John Oliver — someone I had never heard of until I saw this earlier this morning — covers any number of topics I’ve previously dealt with over the course of the last several years in my EVIDENCE-BASED MEDICINE COLUMN.   Even though it’s got a satirical flavor to it, Oliver’s commentary is spot on as he reveals a few of the sordid details of the incestuous relationship between “Big Pharma” and Medicine.

If you do nothing else with this video, watch the very end of it; from the 15:20 mark.  I promise that you will fall over laughing at the spoofed drug ad.  By the way, just saw the latest stats for 2014 from Express Scripts.  Drug spending was up a whopping 13% over the previous year, with specialty drugs up nearly a third (did you get a 31% raise last year?).  If you enjoy this sort of thing, you may want to do some research on an older wonder drug, PROGENITORIVOX.


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