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Thursday 10 May 2012

The Health Debate (4). The cost-effectiveness of Big Pharma drugs

The cost of Conventional Medical treatment is exorbitant, and always has been. Given the ineffectiveness and inherent dangers of pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines, the issue of cost-effectiveness should now be considered. We have a National Health Service (NHS) that has cost us in excess of £110 billion in recent years. From its inauguration in 1947, costs have risen prodigiously year-by-year - usually amidst claims that the service is 'under-funded'. The same can be said for most national health services throughout the world.

We also have the situation where the numbers of people suffering from chronic diseases, such as arthritis, diabetes, cancers of all types, autism, dementia, depression and other mental health conditions, and disease linked to heart, kidneys and liver, have all increased, exponentially.

We now suffer chronic disease at epidemic levels. Why? Why is it not discussed in the mainstream media - except to suggest that not sufficient public money is being spent on health?

If we then consider the known, and admitted side-effects, adverse reactions, and the disease-inducing effects (DIEs) of pharmaceutical drugs, the link between increased expenditure on conventional medicine, which is largely drug based, and increasing health care, costs becomes clear.

This crucial feature of the 'health debate' is rarely discussed by the mainstream media. Nor is the cost and performance of conventional medicine ever compared with other medical therapies, like homeopathy.

Why is this? And what kind of questions should the media be asking - if it had any intention of entering into "the Health Debate"? Perhaps these are just of few of them!
  • Why does the media fail to ask searching questions about why pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines are so excessively expensive?
  • Why does the media not focus on both side of the 'cost-effectiveness' question when it comes to pharmaceutical drugs?
  • Why does the media fail to ask questions about the link between increasing NHS spending on pharmaceutical drugs, and the rising levels of chronic disease?
  • Why has the media not conducted comparative studies on the cost-effectiveness of conventional medicine, Homeopathy, and other CAM therapies?
  • Why are does the media not question the NHS abut why its resources are spent almost totally on one medical discipline, conventional, drug-based medicine? Why does it not ask the NHS why it does not spend more money on Homeopathy, and other CAM therapies?
  • Why, despite massive annual increases in NHS spending since 1948, are conventional medical services continually overstretched, and so often quite unable to cope with the rising demands of ill-health and disease?
When HRT (hormone replacement therapy) was found to cause breast cancer in 2002 (it was known to do so many years before that), prescriptions for the drug (once said to be a wonder drug, and entirely safe) reduced massively. There followed, over the next few years, a major reduction in breast cancer cases in Britain. The mainstream media has barely mentioned this (and more recently has allowed conventional medicine to claim that this reduction in breast cancer was part of its successful campaign against the disease! 

What this all means is that conventional medicine is not only expensive, in its own right, but it is expensive because it creates more illness, requiring more treatment for the new diseases! 

  • The pharmaceutical companies have developed a marvellous business structure! 
  • Their drugs treat disease; cause iatrogenic disease; and so profit again when they try to treat the new diseases!
The cost of some pharmaceutical drugs is also quite amazing, but rarely questioned by the mainstream media. Several years ago there was a debate about the drug Herceptin, and whether it should be available, free of charge, on the NHS. Herceptin was said at the time to cost some £30,000 per person per year, and was designed to treat women with breast cancer. Many of these women, of course, would have been those who developed breast cancer as a result of taking HRT! The media failed to point out (i) that the campaign for Herceptin was funded by the drug manufacturer; or (ii) that the drug was known to cause heart problems, and death. And so it continues....

For the drug companies it is a profitable business. 

For many patients it is a personal disaster.

For the NHS and the British taxpayer the NHS has become a spiralling, out of control, and bottomless pit.