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  1. The closer medical care and medicines get to being free, the more they cost somebody else.
    Big Pharma is even advertising prescription medicines on television. “Ask your doctor if Cymbalta is right for you?”

    Fifty years ago when my kids were being born and being treated for all the normal childhood diseases and I was paying cash for treatments, it was affordable when I was making less than $500 a month. Today as your and my ACA cost for medical care approaches zero, I couldn’t afford any of it without $1000 a month insurance. In spite of common sense, we seem to be lining up for free lunches.

    • And we all know there’s no such thing as a free lunch. (And for the record, DTC advertising by pharmaceutical companies may be legal now but it’s still wrong, wrong, wrong. Somebody needs to pull that industry’s fangs.)

  2. Not only is DTC drug advertising now common, it appears to me to be the predominant type of ad on the evening news broadcasts. Also notable is the type of medicine being pushed. The most lucrative medicine for Big Pharma is not something that cures a condition, like an antibiotic for example, but one for some kind of chronic condition that you have to take long-term. Something for diabetes, high cholesterol, or sexual dysfunction for example.

    The root cause of this problem, in my opinion, is that our medical system is a for-profit system. The ultimate object is not to improve the health of the public but to pander to fads and popular fears in the most profitable way possible. A government healthcare system on the other hand would, ideally, be scientifically designed to maintain health and improve the quality of life.

    • By far the biggest chunk of income for the medical journal I used to run was pharmaceutical advertising. Full-page 4-color ads directed at the physician readership. That income all but dried up when DTC advertising was made legal. It’s readily apparent on my bookshelf where bound volumes of each year of publication shrunk from about two inches thick down to one inch over the course of 15 years. It’s much more profitable to convince consumers they have a problem that can be treated with “Curesital” than it is to convince doctors to prescribe said drug for a condition that may not really need treatment.

"Nothing is more dangerous than ignorance and intolerance armed with power." ~ Voltaire

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