Let’s be honest here; the New York Times does not like the pharmaceutical industry and its stories seem to highlight mistakes by pharma rather than the fact that a lot of people are still alive and living better quality lives due, in part, to prescription drugs. According to an article this morning in the Times “Spending on prescription drugs nationwide has been slowing for years because of the increasingly widespread use of low-cost generics.
"Convincing people they are sick and need a drug is a multi-billion dollar industry. In 2015, Big Pharma dropped a record-breaking $5.4 billion on direct-to-consumer (DTC) ads, according to Kantar Media. And it paid off for Big Pharma. The same year, Americans spent a record $457 billion on prescription drugs. The U.S. and New Zealand are the only countries where DTC is legal. Americans also pay more for drugs and devices than any other country." SAVE A LIFE and SIGN THE PETITION.
The facts are pretty staggering: 70% of Americans take at least one prescription drug according to a report last night on NBC Nightly News. That statistic caught even me off guard and made me wonder if prescription drugs have been oversold. Here are the arguments..
According to an editorial in today’s Times “pharma companies are taking advantage of a mix of laws that force insurers to include essentially all expensive drugs in their policies, and a philosophy that demands that every new health care product be available to everyone, no matter how little it helps or how much it costs.”
The drug industry has been largely about selling Americans prescription drugs but the need to take the next step to also talk about prevention. This means that patient websites should be required to include content about chronic health conditions and their effect on quality of life. It can’t be a soft approach either. They have to show and tell how lack of exercise and eating fast food everyday can contribute to chronic health conditions.
Researchers find that nearly 70 percent of Americans are on at least one prescription drug, and more than half receive at least two prescriptions, but why medications are prescribed should not be determined by pharma pressure on medical/scientific guidelines.