Good for Business, Bad for Patients?

Excerpts from Dr. Jon Abramson’s ABC News Op-Ed:

It’s perfect. Pfizer buys Wyeth‘s pipeline, the behemoth marketing power of Pfizer gets leveraged, the work force gets consolidated and the $22 billion borrowed is read as a sign that banks are willing to lend again…

The core problem with American medicine isn’t really access or cost. It’s that medical knowledge itself has been turned into a commodity, produced and disseminated with the primary goal of optimizing profits rather than health…

What we’ve got is a good old-fashioned case of market failure. But understanding the magnitude and consequences of the failure of the market to oversee the relevance and integrity of commercially generated medical knowledge is virtually impossible to see unless you’re a corporate insider or have a subpoena to gain access to the unspun scientific evidence (closely held as proprietary information by the drug companies) and other corporate documents…

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