Bioethics Discussion Blog: Examples of Healthy Advice or Unhealthy Intrusions

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Sunday, October 29, 2006

Examples of Healthy Advice or Unhealthy Intrusions

From the Bioethics Forum October 27 2006 comes this article about frank pharmaceutical companies’ intrusions into the doctor-patient relationship all under the banner of health advice to the patient. Intrusions consist of video drug commercials on company supplied screens in the doctor’s office to company supplied laptops in the doctor’s office for the patients to enter their medical history and then the company provides specific health information to the patient. And if that isn’t enough, how about a pharmaceutical company supplying physicians with what the patients may think is their physicians own personal website but actually is a device, as described in the article, “designed to gather information about patients and to lure them to other web sites designed to trigger demands for specific drugs.” Read the article and let me know what you think. It seems that direct-to-consumer advertising in magazines and TV is not sufficient for pharmaceutical companies. Now they are inserting themselves right into the doctor-patient relationship. What better way to twist that relationship toward the direction of the drug company?

However,what I didn't get from the article was the motivation of the physicians who let the pharmaceutical companies into their offices and allow them to manipulate their patients and in effect interpose themselves into the doctor-patient relationship. Do the doctors get any financial benefit from the companies? What is the payback, if any? And does the health information provided to the patient by these various services sufficient to trump the possible unethical advertising? ..Maurice.

3 Comments:

At Tuesday, October 31, 2006 1:23:00 PM, Anonymous Daniel Haszard said...

Thanks for posting about this issue.

90,000 pharma reps in the usa,you can't watch the evening news without being bombarded.

What irks me is that the Eli Lilly company's blockbuster Zyprexa has been implicated in causing TEN times greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
They then turn around and sell other blockbuster drugs to treat the same diabetes.
--
Daniel Haszard www.zyprexa-victims.com

 
At Wednesday, November 01, 2006 1:48:00 PM, Anonymous Jaine said...

I wondered about kick backs doctors might get for offering this information too. This type of nonsense demonstrates short term thinking skills. It might benefit individual doctors through short term financial gain but in the long run it degrades the profession as a whole. Doctors don’t like being viewed as being little more than pill pushers for drug companies and yet they can’t say no to the perks? It is short term individual gain for long term discrediting of the profession. Professionals decide how they want to be viewed via their own actions. When I hear commercials or read an article stating that X number of doctors think ‘this or that’ I just laugh. It has no meaning because for a new laptop or trip or just out of pure ignorance what won’t they prescribe or endorse? I think back to DES and thalidomide when reflecting on how much doctors actually know about the drugs they hand out. Doctors know very little about the drugs so should not be spokes people for drugs. A drug is approved and they prescribe it out in good faith. Good faith is not knowledge. Collecting pay-offs for promoting a drug is a scam…but an insightful one.

 
At Saturday, November 03, 2012 10:47:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm guilty.
I'm a nurse, and through a series of med trials dealing with my primary doc and myself, Cymbalta seems to be "the drug for me" for my DJD in my hip.
My health plan won't pay for it. Drug reps deliver samples to my MD. We are in the precarious position of wanting the reps to deliver, and not wanting to talk to them or have them take up patient visit time.

Gimme' my "free samples" until the patent expires. This is a pathetic game. We play it.

Nevadanurse

 

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