Tag Archives: money

Free market ideology doesn’t work for health care

Free market ideology doesn’t work for health care | Center for Public Integrity – June 8, 2015 – By Wendell Potter

In my column last week I suggested that one of the reasons Americans tolerate paying so much more for health care than citizens of any other country — and getting less to show for it — is our gullibility.

We’ve been far too willing to believe the self-serving propaganda we’ve been fed for decades by health insurers and pharmaceutical companies and every other part of the medical-industrial complex.  Continue reading

Genetic lab pays doctors to push dubious tests

Genetic lab pays doctors up to $144K/yr to push dubious tests By CHARLES PILLER @cpiller  Feb 2017

For doctors, the brochure from a California medical laboratory sounded like easy money: $30 for every person enrolled in a study of genetic tests meant to help select the best pain medication for each patient. A typical physician could make $144,000 a year in “research fees.”

But the clinical trial was largely a ploy to boost Proove Biosciences’s revenues, and many of the doctors who signed up did no actual work, say current and former employees.

Proove has grown rapidly by tapping into the public angst over surging opioid addiction.   Continue reading

Top US hospitals aggressively promoting Alt-Med

Top US hospitals aggressively promoting alternative medicine offerings – Should prestigious hospitals promote unproven alternative medicine? – Stat News – Mar 2017

They’re among the nation’s premier medical centers, at the leading edge of scientific research. Yet hospitals affiliated with Yale, Duke, Johns Hopkins, and other top medical research centers also aggressively promote alternative therapies with little or no scientific backing.

They offer

  • “energy healing” to help treat multiple sclerosis,
  • acupuncture for infertility, and
  • homeopathic bee venom for fibromyalgia.
  • A public forum hosted by the University of Florida’s hospital even promises to explain how herbal therapy can reverse Alzheimer’s. (It can’t.)   Continue reading

Money is Corrupting Science

NEJM editor: “No longer possible to believe much of clinical research published” | The Ethical Nag |Blog post from 2009/11/09

Harvard Medical School’s Dr. Marcia Angell is the former Editor-in-Chief at the New England Journal of Medicine, arguably one of the most respected medical journals on earth

But after reading her article in the New York Review of Books called Drug Companies & Doctors: A Story of Corruption, one wonders if any medical journal on earth is worth anybody’s respect anymore.

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. I take no pleasure in this conclusion, which I reached slowly and reluctantly over my two decades as an editor of The New England Journal of Medicine.”   Continue reading

Making Medical Decisions Without Accountability

The doctor who wrote this article is bravely “speaking truth to power” by pointing out the current practice of allowing businesses with conflicting financial interests to determine patients’ medical treatment.

I have long wondered why

  • insurance companies,
  • government agencies,
  • various legislators,
  • self-proclaimed addiction “experts”, and
  • corporate employees in some remote office building

are allowed to decide what my medical treatment should be.

Dr. Dorio is also questioning this practice which interduces an obvious conflict of interest in determining a patient’s treatment.   Continue reading

FInancial Involvement Inhibits Trust

Homo Economicus Belief Inhibits Trust – PLoS One – 2013 Oct – Free PMC Article

As a foundational concept in economics, the homo economicus assumption regards humans as rational and self-interested actors.

In contrast, trust requires individuals to believe partners’ benevolence and unselfishness.

The present three experiments demonstrated that the direct exposure to homo economicus belief can weaken trust.  And economic situations like profit calculation can also activate individuals’ homo economicus belief and inhibit their trust.

It seems that people’s increasing homo economicus belief may serve as one cause of the worldwide decline of trust.  Continue reading

Encroachment into Medical Decision-Making

Physicians Organizing Committee Battle Encroachment into Medical Decision-Making – SCV Physician Report – October 14, 2016

War is being waged on behalf of American citizens against the business takeover of hospitals, yet most people don’t realize this battle exists.  Surprisingly, the warriors scattered throughout our country in this fight are doctors.

hospitals have created a shield against criticism using a mantra they are “too important to fail.”  Touting this defense, hospital administrators have self-aggrandized their position and covertly bestowed profits enriching personal salaries, bonuses, and golden parachutes, while the public is left to suffer.

Healthcare in our country is in shambles.   Continue reading

Taxpayers Pay for Research and Corporate Profits

Harnessing the U.S. Taxpayer to Fight Cancer and Make Profits – The New York Times – 12/19/16

It has long troubled me that when tax-funded researchers find a promising new drug, they don’t publish the details but rather start a company to sell that drug.

Dr. Belldegrun, a physician, co-founded Kite Pharma, a company that could be the first to market next year with a highly anticipated new immunotherapy treatment.

His stock in Kite is worth about $170 million. Investors have profited along with him, as the company’s share price has soared to about $50 from an initial price of $17 in 2014.

Kite’s treatment, a form of immunotherapy called CAR-T, was initially developed by a team of researchers at the National Cancer Institute, led by a longtime friend and mentor of Dr. Belldegrun.   Continue reading

Vagus nerve linked to immune system and $Profits

Feinstein Institute Scientists Discover More Detail About the Vagus Nerve and Immune System | The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research – December 21st, 2016

Here are three articles showing how taxpayer-funded research discoveries are turned into corporate profits.

Researchers at The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research discovered more details about how the vagus nerve interacts with the immune system, better understanding how bioelectronic medicine may treat disease.

By mapping the mechanisms of the vagus nerve and identifying new neural pathways by which the vagus nerve sends signals to the rest of the body, researchers now can focus their attention on using bioelectronic medicine to activate the newly revealed pathways and treat a wide variety of conditions and diseases.   Continue reading

Alt-Medicine Harming Science-Based Medicine

How the ‘alt’ is polarizing, and harming, medicine By Benjamin Mazer – December 29, 2016

Alternative medicine is an innocuous, even attractive, term, framed as a healthy, natural option other than conventional medicine. What could possibly be bad about alternatives and nature?

The truth is, there’s little unconventional or natural about the factory production lines and multibillion-dollar industry behind most of the so-called alternative products used by millions of Americans.

Instead, much of alt-med is based on a deep distrust of for-profit medicine and science.

Yet this is the direction we are being pushed by the CDC, with its edict not to use conventional and effective opioids.   Continue reading