onward corporate profits!...,
| Main |
off-label drug prescriptions:
means prescribing a drug for a condition which it hasn't been tested or approved as treatment. Why do I care?
At the same time the pharma-lobby and its Democrat/GOP hucksters are giving us a dog and pony show about how we can't be allowed to buy American-made FDA approved drugs from Canada at lower rates because they haven't been approved by the FDA the Bush administration (among others) is weakening the FDA's already weak ability to regulate off-label drug use, in effect making FDA approval virtually meaningless:
Knight Ridder found that off-label prescribing for a sample of top-selling drugs has nearly doubled in the last five years — the Bush administration has opened the door to doing even less to stop it.
Saying recent court rulings have eroded its power, the FDA has sought public comment on whether drug makers should have more leeway to market the unapproved uses of their profitable drugs. Overseeing the effort is a Bush appointee who, before coming to the FDA, helped sue the agency over its marketing and advertising restrictions.
...Knight Ridder found that the off-label use for some drugs is as high as 90 percent of all prescriptions sold for it.
People are getting killed and maimed for life, to help maintain profitability for drug cartels that have unfettered access to doctors and no restrictions on what tall tales they can spin in their ears:
Over the last decade, the number of drug company sales reps has more than doubled to 94,000, one for every seven doctors in the nation. In 2002, the value of the free drug samples passed out to physicians reached $11.9 billion, up more than 140 percent since 1996.
On a more general note, Knight-Ridder seems to be one of the few wire services actually doing consistently good journalism, but I wouldn't take my word for it, I'm only checking in on them sporadically, and they've had this story up for idunnohowlong. They don't make me scream at my laptop, and that, as it happens, helps me to not scream.