Saved Anthologies

Foreign Affairs Anthology Series

Best International Relations Books of 2013


All anthologies are free when you subscribe

Bad Pharma: How Drug Companies Mislead Doctors and Harm Patients

In This Review

Bad Pharma: How Drug Companies Mislead Doctors and Harm Patients

By Ben Goldacre
Faber & Faber, 2013
448 pp. $28.00

This book levels a scathing attack on large pharmaceutical firms and the officials who regulate them. Goldacre, a British physician, articulately and extensively documents how large pharmaceutical firms have inched up as close as possible to committing outright fraud and occasionally have crossed the threshold. According to Goldacre, major drug companies have financed the ghostwriting of papers supposedly penned by reputable scholars in respectable scientific journals, systematically withheld experimental drug-testing data from public and professional scrutiny, and failed to run promised trials to detect side effects after drugs have been approved for sale. In the face of this unethical behavior, regulators on both sides of the Atlantic have been complacent and negligent. Goldacre believes that a strong dose of sunlight could eventually disinfect the industry, and he calls for full transparency regarding past ghostwritten articles and for the publication of all testing data, except in those few cases in which patient privacy would clearly be infringed. Not incidentally, such steps would also help national health-care programs and patients avoid wasting money on expensive drugs of dubious value.

Enjoy more high quality articles like this one.

Become a Subscriber

  • Paywall-free reading of new articles posted daily online and almost a century of archives
  • Unlock access to iOS/Android apps to save editions for offline reading
  • Six issues a year in print, online, and audio editions
Subscribe Now

Related Articles

This site uses cookies to improve your user experience. Click here to learn more.