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Show 997: Big Pharma and Health Care

What is big pharma's influence on health care in the US and elsewhere?
Show 997: Big Pharma and Health Care
Dr. Gøtzsche Nordic Cochrane Center
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Big Pharma and Health Care

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Dr. Peter Gøtzsche worked for the pharmaceutical industry years ago supervising clinical trials and working in regulatory affairs. But this industry insider has become the toughest of critics.

Dr. Gøtzsche is concerned about the impact that big pharma exerts on health care. Pharmaceutical firms are among the most profitable in the world. In the US alone, the bill for prescription drugs last year topped $350 billion.

How Does Big Pharma Affect Health Care?

How can drug regulatory agencies around the globe stay on top of this powerful industry? Or can’t they? Find out why Dr. Gøtzsche draws parallels between big pharma and organized crime. He also compares drug makers to the tobacco industry. What are the similarities and differences?

This Week’s Guest:

Peter Gøtzsche, MD, is professor of clinical research design and analysis at the University of Copenhagen. He co-founded the Cochrane Collaboration in 1993 and is currently director at the Nordic Cochrane Center in Copenhagen.

He is a specialist in internal medicine who worked in clinical trials and regulatory affairs in the pharmaceutical industry between 1975 and 1983. He is a member of several groups publishing  guidelines  for  good reporting  of research and has co-authored CONSORT for randomized trials  (www.consort-statement.org), STROBE for observational studies (www.strobe-statement.org), PRISMA for systematic reviews and meta-analyses (www.prisma-statement.org), and SPIRIT for trial protocols (www.spirit-statement.org).

Dr. Gøtzsche’s book is Deadly Medicines and Organised Crime: How Big Pharma Has Corrupted Healthcare. His website is www.deadlymedicines.dk

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The podcast of this program will be available the Monday after the broadcast date. The show can be streamed online from this site and podcasts can be downloaded for free for four weeks after the date of broadcast. After that time has passed, digital downloads are available for $2.99. CDs may be purchased at any time after broadcast for $9.99.

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About the Author
Joe Graedon is a pharmacologist who has dedicated his career to making drug information understandable to consumers. His best-selling book, The People’s Pharmacy, was published in 1976 and led to a syndicated newspaper column, syndicated public radio show and web site. In 2006, Long Island University awarded him an honorary doctorate as “one of the country's leading drug experts for the consumer.” .
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