Gold Meritorious Patron
Before you start taking pot shots at people without doing the proper research because you don't like them, you should read this thread from years ago that shows there is a Scientology connection to pharmaceuticals.
You should apologize.
I think it's no secret now that I worked in Big Pharma for over a decade. Let me set some things straight, starting with the thread above.
A trademark is not a patent.
A trademark is not a patent.
The Co$ had no, zip, nada, none, nothing to do with Sandoz.
What you see there could possibly be an early application of the tech of buying up URLs that are likely to be used by a future company because the names are so catchy / common / plausible sounding, and that probably should have been the first guess as to what is going on.
But it's not. The real world is even more complicated.
Did anyone stop to ask why these trademarks are in New Zealand? Fucking New Zealand? (Sorry Kiwis, I love your country, but you are waaaaaaay down in the minor leagues when it comes to economics). As a conspiracy? Are you kidding me? The population is one quarter that of Greater NYC. A conspiracy to capture what is quite possibly the smallest drug market in the developed world now that Liechtenstein and Luxembourg are part of the EMA? Why did they trademark in New Zealand, and not, for example in the fucking United States? I mean, when did the Co$ ever not go for the big money? Ever?
This shows up in Kiwiland because of the peculiarities of the New Zealand drug approval system. They only allow each individual company to introduce to their market new drugs every few years, and the company has to pick their most lucrative ones, because they only allow each company a few slots. So a very large number of drugs are never marketed in New Zealand, and given the costs, the drug companies never patent the chemical entity OR trademark in New Zealand. I will bet you that some Sea Ogre in New Zealand saw that the names were trademarked in the rest of the world, and got the bright idea of patenting those names so that if Sandoz ever did launch them in New Zealand, the Co$ could sue Sandoz for trademark infringement, or at least extort some money from them to use those names.
Next, brainwashing psychs in med school. Puhleeeez. Obviously you've never been in the system. I do not know of a single med school in the US that allows Pharma companies access to their interns and residents. It's totally verboten. I once gave a talk as a Pharma Clinical Development Director at a major medical school - and the residents were allowed in. I was invited by the Chair of the department concerned. But I had to submit my topic over 3 months in advance and my slides a month in advance to be vetted to make sure there were no advertising or marketing claims in them. I spoke only about basic science, and the Dean of the school was there to make sure I didn't stray from that. He actually chuckled when I explained some nuances of the science and said that they ought to push back with to sales reps who only barely understand what they are selling - I'm sure my marketing colleagues' heads would have exploded no hearing that, but they were not even allowed in the building to talk to the professors (which is usually kosher at med schools) the entire day I was there.
Now don't get me wrong: Pharma often behaves badly. They lobby like hell and they don't spend enough on research. That being said, I've worked on over 3 dozen projects and drugs, one of which I took from preclinical to launch. The cost of developing that drug was over $1.5 billion dollars. That's a lotta dough to recoup when the bean counters start doing ROI calculations.
Furthermore, in their marketing and sales, I think Pharma acts badly by pushing psych meds for temporary conditions such as divorce or death of a loved one that should not be medicated. But for major depressive disorder, what, besides an SSRI or and SNRI would you use? Electroshock? Lobotomy? There are some old meds called tricyclic antidepressants with horrible side effects. Want to go back to those? What, exactly, is in a psych's armamentarium besides drugs? Because they use what's really the only tools at their disposal, doesn't mean they're brainwashed.
Now a psychologist? They are there to help you talk through things. For real, chronic, medical conditions, a wise patient consults both, and like EC, determines - with their doctor's advice - when and if it's appropriate to titrate down the dosage or go off altogether.
I'd love to see some genetic therapies that make many drugs obsolete. In fact looking into that is part of my current job description. But wishing for that doesn't make it so, just as the PETA loonies who claim that we could use computer models instead of animal models are living in a world of make believe.
The Pharma industry is constrained by law to operate within evidence based medicine. There have been fines in the billions of dollars for several companies for going "off label" and making claims that were substantiated by only one study instead of the replicate ones required for the FDA to place that evidence on the label. Part of my job description was designing the studies that would eventually go into a submission package, and the MDs, Ph.D.s and Pharm Ds who design studies actually do ask themselves "would I put my mother in this study". In one case I remember, one of our basic scientists actually did have her mother go to the nearest clinical trial site and apply to get in the study her daughter was working on. This woman had tried everything and nothing had worked, and our drug did. It was a miraculous thing. This is the back end of the industry that never gets talked about. Sure the marketers go overboard in many instances. But the drug itself HAS to work, and has to work so that the risk to benefit ratio is satisfactory to both the FDA and an independent panel of experts.
The medical community is not brainwashed, it's not out to get you, and if you pay for a drug, there are mountains of evidence on file with the world's regulatory agencies that the drug works and the side effects are well characterized. Whether you think you're getting good value on what you pay for is another matter, and we can debate the ethical boundaries in Pharma marketing all day. Personally, I want to see DTC and non-science trained sales reps banned. But that doesn't mean I don't take the drugs that are prescribed by my doc. I just got over a bout of pneumonia after the flu a few months ago, and I was damn glad that GSK put in the time and money to develop Augmentin.