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Healthy Skepticism Updates

Update 2007-07-20

HS Int News
Two new Healthy Skepticism International News issues have now been added to our website.

May 2007 Vol 25 No 5
Is it insulting to suggest that health professionals are influenced by drug promotion?
By Peter R Mansfield
One of the most important barriers to healthy skepticism about drug promotion is the belief that to suggest that health professionals are influenced is to insult them. Some arguments for overcoming that barrier are presented in this issue. Peter has found these arguments to be effective for use in presentations to health professionals.

April 2007 Vol 25 No 4
Regulation of Homeopathic Products
By Ken Harvey
Ken questions whether companies are misusing the regulations that govern homeopathic products in Australia in order to market pharmacologically inactive substances labelled as DHEA, HGH and melatonin.

Call for papers
If you  have written, or would like to write, a paper relevant to misleading drug promotion and would like to have it published in Healthy Skepticism International News, please contact: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Special thanks to Judy Norsigian
We thank Judy for her article "Misleading Ads and How They Hurt Us" published by The Women's Media Center (USA) on 25 May 2007. We usually get one or two new subscribers every day but there has been a surge of new subscribers since Judy's article was published.

Who is Sebastian?
For technical reasons to do with spam filters etc from now on Healthy Skepticism Updates will come to you from: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Sebastian is named in honour of one of the pioneers of moderate skepticism: Sebastian Castellio 1515–1563. Please don't send emails to: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
If you want to contact us please use one of the addresses given below:


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Next Update: Update 2007-08-22

Previous Update: Update 2007-07-03

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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