This searing indictment, David Healy’s most comprehensive and forceful argument against the pharmaceuticalization of medicine, tackles problems in health care that are leading to a growing number of deaths and disabilities. Healy, who was the first to draw attention to the now well-publicized suicide-inducing side effects of many anti-depressants, attributes our current state of affairs to three key factors: product rather than process patents on drugs, the classification of certain drugs as prescription-only, and industry-controlled drug trials. These developments have tied the survival of pharmaceutical companies to the development of blockbuster drugs, so that they must overhype benefits and deny real hazards. Healy further explains why these trends have basically ended the possibility of universal health care in the United States and elsewhere around the world. He concludes with suggestions for reform of our currently corrupted evidence-based medical system.
This is happening more and more all over the world — forcing medication on people. I think it’s hard for people who have voluntarily agreed to take psychiatric drugs to understand what an atrocious reality this can be for those people who are forced to take the drugs. Some people may have relatively positive associations with their own experience of psychiatric drugs, but that is simply not everyone’s experience and this phenomena of forced drugging is, indeed, a human rights violation.
We need to keep in mind these are MICE studies. The mice are unable to voice concern about side effects. There is no way to assess their quality of life while they are being treated with the drug and before they are sacrificed to examine their brains.