Thursday, January 03, 2008

Just The Medicine

Great article on Alternet today about the US health system - pointing out what a terrible idea it is to let pharmaceutical companies advertise on TV in the US. The numbers they don't include - and I don't remember but I know they're in the film Sicko are how the US spends a great deal more per head on healthcare than many countries who have universal healthcare. Taking adverts off TV (and other mediums) would surely help scale back the numbers of people dosing up on things they really don't need and actually making themselves worse by stacking their system with needless drugs.

Fortunately so far in the UK we don't have adverts for prescription drugs - we do have adverts for painkillers and off-the-shelf or over-the-counter drugs. I think even these should be taken off - people shouldn't be telling their pharmacist what they want, years ago you went to the chemists and asked what they had for your condition, these days people go in with a brand name in mind.


Anonymous said...

Interestingly, a couple of years ago the head of GlaxoSmithKline testified to Parliament that it would be a really bad idea to let pharmaceutical companies advertise in the UK. Of course, they advertise in the US just like anyone else. But at least they aren't pushing to expand it elsewhere. There's not a whole lot about this industry that I like, but occasionally there's a crumb.

Anna Black said...

Great idea K, I am listening and reading at the same time... getting you in triple stereo ;) x