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Healthy Skepticism Library item: 2930

Warning: This library includes all items relevant to health product marketing that we are aware of regardless of quality. Often we do not agree with all or part of the contents.

 

Publication type: Journal Article

Holmes JD.
Drug costs.
N Z Med J 1977 Jul 27; 86:(592):108-9


Abstract:

There is one sales representative for every 20 New Zealand doctors and companies spend about $3.5 million per year on sales representatives. The professionalization of detailers tends to obscure their basic purpose which is to encourage doctors to use drugs. Prescribing patterns in New Zealand can only be changed by employing more trained clinical pharmacologists to give advice on prescribing.

Keywords:
*letter to the editor/New Zealand/sales representatives/promotion costs and volume/PROMOTIONAL TECHNIQUES: DETAILING/VOLUME OF AND EXPENDITURE ON PROMOTION Advertising* Costs and Cost Analysis Drug Industry* New Zealand Prescriptions, Drug*

 

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Far too large a section of the treatment of disease is to-day controlled by the big manufacturing pharmacists, who have enslaved us in a plausible pseudo-science...
The blind faith which some men have in medicines illustrates too often the greatest of all human capacities - the capacity for self deception...
Some one will say, Is this all your science has to tell us? Is this the outcome of decades of good clinical work, of patient study of the disease, of anxious trial in such good faith of so many drugs? Give us back the childlike trust of the fathers in antimony and in the lancet rather than this cold nihilism. Not at all! Let us accept the truth, however unpleasant it may be, and with the death rate staring us in the face, let us not be deceived with vain fancies...
we need a stern, iconoclastic spirit which leads, not to nihilism, but to an active skepticism - not the passive skepticism, born of despair, but the active skepticism born of a knowledge that recognizes its limitations and knows full well that only in this attitude of mind can true progress be made.
- William Osler 1909