big pharma tactics

6 Crazy Examples of Prescription Drug Price Gouging

06 Oct: 6 Crazy Examples of Prescription Drug Price Gouging

News has broke about the recent prescription drug price gouging that has been taking place, and its leaving some individuals in serious medical trouble. Without the money to pay for the increases in drug prices, patients often see their medical conditions becoming worse, even to the point of death. Take a look at the examples of some of the most craziest drug price increases for yourself . . . Turing Pharmaceuticals Perhaps one of the most insane prescription price increases was that made by Turing Pharmaceuticals CEO, Martin Shkreli. When he raised the price of a Daraprim pill from $13.50 to $750, (5,000% markup) he became one of the most hated men in the American and a “poster child” for Big Pharma’s insidious greed….

Insidious Greed: How Big Pharma Rips You Off on Drugs

21 Oct: Insidious Greed: How Big Pharma Rips You Off on Drugs

Recently, through the launch of a new online database last week the U.S. government revealed that in 2013, doctors were paid roughly $380 million by medical device and pharmaceutical corporations for speeches and consultations, all within a five-month time frame. Big Pharma spends almost $20 billion annually marketing their products to doctors, which yields profits upwards of $300 billion per year in drug sales. A handful of these doctors were paid more than $500,000 apiece. Others were paid millions for the drugs and devices they helped to create. Doctors insist that this money doesn’t influence what they recommend to their patients. However, it’s extremely difficult to imagine what purpose the payments would serve if not to increase product sales through prescriptions. has…

05 May: Has Big Pharma Really Taken Over Medical Research?

The creators of the new “Bought” movie are on a mission to answer the question once and for all — pulling the curtain back on Big Pharma’s insidious greed machine. “There is a story roaming through my head, one that’s insisting to get out. It was born in over 100 interviews with genuine, loving, caring health care professionals, researchers and advocates last year. We kept picking up a theme, a sense that the game was rigged, that we’d already played and lost but didn’t know it. Our health has already been Bought. It’s a risky story to tell, but would be a tragedy to passively consent to with silence.” The movie trailer begins at the 1:03 mark.

04 Mar: Why do Americans pay so much more for prescription drugs?

Boy, Big Pharma is good. They repeat the same story again and again and pretty soon the media is repeating it again and again, too. Forget digging, researching, checking for yourself — none of the conventional techniques of journalism seem to be powerful enough to withstand Big Pharma’s daily drip-drip-drip propaganda stream. Of course, it doesn’t help that Big Pharma’s bought-and-paid-for Washington politicians have been taught to spout the same fictions as well. On the issue of the safety of buying drugs from Canadian pharmacies, the clear and indisputable facts are (1) Canada’s drug approval standards are as good, if not better, than those of the United States, and (2) no American has ever been harmed by ordering drugs online…

Rogue Online Pharmacies -

05 Sep: Are All Canadian Pharmacies “Rogue” Online Pharmacies? LegitScript Thinks So.

While reading Benjamin Gluck’s Internet Pharmacy Law blog, I came across a reference to an “Internet pharmacy verification and information service” I hadn’t yet heard of: LegitScript. I like the professed mission of LegitScript: to improve online pharmacy safety by offering a database that allows consumers to enter a pharmacy’s name and find out whether it’s legitimate or not. LegitScript apparently intends to make money by providing a verification seal to online pharmacies that meet its standards. I say “apparently” because LegitScript verification is currently provided free of charge. All of which sounds fine — until you look a little closer. You see, LegitScript claims ALL Canadian pharmacies are unsafe. Even the most established, reputable pharmacies — licensed and inspected…

21 Jan: Ad Age: Drug companies are begging for heightened regulation

Double whammy for Big Pharma in Advertising Age today. First, a story headlined “Vytorin Ad Shame Taints Entire Marketing Industry” — an excerpt: Reports that [as] Merck & Co. and Schering-Plough Corp. kept under wraps for more than a year findings that Vytorin does not deliver results it spent more than $100 million advertising to consumers is much more than a PR disaster for the drug’s co-marketers. Coming on the heels of a New York Times story that Pfizer’s $2 billion drug Lyrica treats a condition, fibromyalgia, that a lot of doctors don’t think exists, the Vytorin news is fanning the flames of public mistrust for the $5 billion direct-to-consumer drug industry — and the ad business in general. “The…

09 Dec: Bring out your meds: flu season is here

Wolfgang Niesielski at the Contra Costa Times rings in flu season (and its commercialization) with this humor column. Excerpt: HOW CAN YOU not be aware that the flu season is now “officially” open? Actually, unofficially, it started toward the end of the summer vacation when the allergy season was at a wane. Now you notice someone coughing, sneezing and feeling miserable in every second TV commercial (this combined with the allergy season, means that there is always someone coughing, sneezing and feeling miserable throughout the entire year). Turn on the TV, and instead of watching the family happily frolicking in green meadows and colorful flower gardens after ingesting the particular product that financed the commercial, you observe the wise, tough-as-nails…

26 Nov: What do tag clouds say about top pharma blogs?

TagCrowd is a great tool that lets you input words from any source, and it spits out a tag cloud that lets you visualize word frequencies. We thought it would be interesting to take a bunch of recent posts from some top pharma blogs to see what’s foremost on their minds. Among the findings: John Mack is all about pharma marketing. Peter Rost is obviously obsessed with dissing Pfizer — but is he also obsessed with promoting BrandWeekNRX? Ed Silverman is on the FDA’s jock. The Angry Pharmacist is REALLY angry.Enjoy!Pharmalot agency approval asthma astrazeneca blog brennan clear company compulsory continue data death doctors drug ed effects effexor fda flu gene glaxo health judge marketing meds meeting minister mongkol patients…

01 Oct: $19 billion: total value of gifts to physicians by Big Pharma annually

BusinessWeek has a very good story on efforts to limit or force disclosure of Big Pharma’s gifts to doctors — which are estimated to be about $19 billion each year. As New Jersey Attorney General Anne Milgram poses the problem: “Patients should be getting prescription and device recommendations based on what’s best for them, not based on financial incentives doctors receive from companies.” And that $19 billion figure doesn’t even include the other incentives provided by pharmaceutical companies.

17 Aug: Drug ad spending up 330 percent since 1996

Since the rule change in 1996 that allowed Big Pharma to begin advertising directly to consumers, drug advertising budgets have exploded — while policing of such ads for accuracy has steadily declined, according to a study in the New England Journal of Medicine. The thing I find most troubling about the report is that even though we have far more drug commercials now than in 1996, fewer drug companies have been reprimanded for their ads. In 1996, 142 warning letters were sent out by the FDA. Last year, there were only 21. Either the drug companies are making flawless ads, or someone isn’t doing their job. Which do you think it is?

13 Aug: Top 10 pharma girls of reality TV is very, very proud to have established itself as a go-to site for those interested in the topic of cheerleader pharma reps and beauty queen pharma reps. And so now we present our Top 10 list of pharma girls from reality TV: 1. April Lewis, Big Brother 6 2. Heather Basciano, U8TV: The Lofters 3. Stephenie LaGrossa, Survivor: Palau and Survivor: Guatemala 4. Aisha Krump, The Rebel Billionaire 5. Ranji, Identity 6. Maria Hoidas, Fear Factor Couples 2005 7. Penny Ramsey, Survivor: Thailand 8. Tijuana Bradley, Survivor: Pearl Islands 9. Cristina C., The Bachelor #3 10. Kristina Grimes, The Apprentice (U.K.) Honorable mention: Andrea Baptiste, The Biggest Loser

10 Aug: Pharma reps debate the tough issues: How much cleavage is too much?

Whenever I stop by the CafePharma message boards, I always regret that I don’t have more time to spend there. I learn so much every time. Consider this series of exchanges in the “Just for Women” section: How much cleavage do you ladies like to show the doctors? And if they’re fake, or extra big, do you like to show them off?… I show as much as it takes to get the business and it works… sensitive subject. wear camisoles under my suits in the summer because it’s hot. cleavage w/out the jacket? sure. but minimal to nothing with it on… I am proud of what I have (natural). I always dress (pleasure and work) tastefully, so I have no…

07 Aug: Novartis patent bid rejected in India

An Indian court has rejected Novartis’ challenge of a law that denies patent protection to drugs that are only minor improvements to earlier drugs. Novartis’ challenge came after the Indian government allowed drug companies to make generic versions of the cancer drug Gleevec. This is great news for consumers — both because it enables more people in the Third World to have access to affordable drugs, and because it encourages companies like Novartis to focus their R&D money on real innovation, rather than wasting valuable research dollars on gaming the system to extend patents. More from Ed at Pharmalot.

05 Aug: More on the low-cost prescription drug plan by Chris Van Hollen

In today’s Baltimore Sun, columnist C. Fraser Smith offers his take on U.S. Rep Chris Von Hollen’s bill that would provide inexpensive drugs to lower-income Americans: People may care as much about the cost of prescription drugs these days as they do about getting a good deal on a car. They’re up against the breathtaking drug costs a lot more often. At least they can talk to the car salesmen. Even if we’re not good at numbers, we probably get a better deal when we haggle. With cars, it’s accepted as the American way. So, what if we could bargain a little on the cholesterol meds? And what if the state came onto the showroom floor (as it were) to…

02 Aug: Gooz on conflict of interest

This story’s about a week old, but we wanted to call it to your attention if you didn’t see it. After a recent, widely reported study showed that padded hip protectors didn’t prevent bone breaks in elderly patients, the issue of hidden drug industry ties to medical research has once again resurfaced. Three of the authors of the study didn’t tell editors of the Journal of the American Medical Association that they had consulted for or received research money from the makers of bone-strengthening drugs. The Big Pharma relationship was uncovered by reporters. The AP talked with blogger Merrill Goozer, who called the case a “no-brainer” conflict of interest: Readers could easily interpret the study to say that since hip…

25 Jul: OxyContin verdict: What have the feds been snorting all these years?

From the AP: Purdue Pharma L.P., the maker of OxyContin, and three of its executives were ordered Friday to pay a $634.5 million fine for misleading the public about the painkiller’s risk of addiction … U.S. District Judge James Jones levied the fine on Purdue, its top lawyer and former president and former chief medical officer after a hearing that lasted about three-and-a-half hours … Designed to be swallowed whole and digested over 12 hours, the pills can produce a heroin-like high if crushed and then swallowed, snorted or injected. It took the feds this long to finally put 2 + 2 together? From 1996 to 2001, the number of oxycodone-related deaths nationwide quintupled. In 2002, the DEA stated the…

23 Jul: Big Pharma uses bought-and-paid-for U.S. pols to bully other countries

On the eve of the International AIDS Society conference in Sydney, Australia, the Brisbane Times tells the sad tale of how Big Pharma has used its influence over U.S. politicians to fight attempts by Thailand to provide low-cost AIDS drugs to its people: The world’s largest pharmaceutical companies are working to prevent developing countries from reducing the price of high-cost medicines. Put simply, in some cases “big pharma” places profits before lives … Since Thailand acted to protect the lives of vulnerable people, members of the US pharmaceutical industry lobbied the US Government to bully Thailand to capitulate. As a result the US Government placed Thailand on its “most wanted” list of intellectual property violators. And that opens the door…