Medical Journals: Bought and Paid For

August 12, 2019

…by Big Pharma advertisers.

“It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published, or to rely on the judgment of trusted physicians or authoritative medical guidelines.” Those are the words of Dr. Marcia Angell, former editor-in-chief of the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine. She was discussing the ways in which clinical trial results can be manipulated by statistical tricks and then presented as the “gold standard” of medical evidence. But the corruption of medical information goes even deeper, and as is too often true, one needs only to follow the money. Put simply, medical journals—the journals that many doctors read and rely on to keep up-to-date—are completely beholden to the drug industry.

A study published in the journal PLoS Medicine brings to light some alarming facts about the business model of the most prestigious medical journals which leaves them reliant on Big Pharma funding—an obvious conflict of interest for publications that are supposed to be sources of unbiased information about drugs and medical treatments.

For example, most journals only accept advertisements relevant to medicine. The study authors found that, in practice, 95% of advertisements in medical journals were for drugs.

Doctors may tell you they aren’t influenced by such ads, but the numbers tell a different story. Studies have shown that for every dollar spent on journal advertising, Big Pharma can expect a return on investment of between $3 and $5.

Journals are reliant on the drug industry in more ways than just advertising. The authors note that “pharmaceutical companies are the primary purchaser of reprints and may buy thousands of reprints if they are advantageous to the drugs that they manufacture. Additionally, drug companies ‘sponsor’ subscriptions provided without cost to targeted populations.”

Professional medical associations are in on this racket, too. The authors write, “in 1996, five of six physician organizations raised 10% or more of their total annual revenue from pharmaceutical company advertising in affiliated medical journals.” In one year, the American Medical Association (AMA) received $40.7 million from advertising in its publications, dwarfing the $17.5 they generated from subscriptions.

Is it any surprise that the AMA is so hostile to integrative medicine, a type of practice that de-emphasizes prescription drugs in favor of cheap, safe, and effective natural medicines? A transition away from prescription drugs threatens the AMA’s benefactors in the drug industry.

Conventional medicine is killing us at alarming rates; when it’s not killing us, it’s ineffective for the vast majority of people. With chronic disease on the rise, business as usual—with Big Pharma, the AMA, and the rest of this crony medical establishment making money hand over fist at our expense—cannot be allowed to continue unchecked.

 

9 responses to “Medical Journals: Bought and Paid For”

  1. Ruth A. Yacko says:

    I have been using supplements since about 1971. At the time I was visiting Iraq with my husband when I had a spell of low blood pressure because of a previous round of dieting and the heat. What fixed me up was a relative who was also a pharmacist. He gave me some B Vitamins which helped. I also remember there was an elderly doctor who told me to eat yogurt because this is what kept everybody healthy.

    This got me started on vitamins and that multiple one-a-day helped. Then I started reading all about nutrition. I followed ‘Adele Davis, Linda Clark, Gaylord Hauser and my hero Jack LaLane. I have changed my routine through the years and have become much more conscious about what I eat and exercise by following Doctor Mercola and Easy Health Options. I still take only supplements NO synthetic meds. I exercise 3 times a week and the gym and am holding my own. I am 81 years old. This is my store (the shortened version).

  2. Sharon Intilli says:

    The fact that this is happening should be deemed criminal. The United States of America is turning into a sham of what was the intention of our Founders. We need to vote people out of Congress who allow this to happen and we need to support those who are willing to make change. We also need to raise our voices CONSTANTLY so that we are heard. It takes just one voice to start a movement.

  3. Jeri Russell says:

    Iatrogenic cause is the THIRD LEADING CAUSE OF DEATH IN THE USA. This is ‘health’ or ‘care’ ? No, it’s SYSTEM. Outrageous!!!

  4. Mary R Mcdermith says:

    I don’t take medications that my doc prescribe if they make no sense to me. I research them carefully now. I have been harmed by prescription drugs in the past so I’m very cautious bout them now. I found my 90 yr old mom was on 18 different drugs and I was appalled so I had her take them into her doc to see if some should be stopped. He went through them and said that all was fine. Then I put my objections in writing and all of a sudden 13 of them weren’t so fine taking her meds down to five necessary drugs. The hazed mind she was living with lifted and she had five more years of enjoyable life left. I am not a willing obedient victim of big pharma.

  5. Jeanette Reuhl says:

    Please stop trying to sell your crap what are you trying to kill everybody

  6. Stay healthy says:

    Cholesterol studies were flawed because they lacked the number of people needed to make a valid study. Millions are spent on lowering It. Statins are dangerous and reduce your risk by 2% or less of a heart attack. There are natural remedies that work with your body not against a mythical disease

  7. M Irani says:

    This is quite shocking and I agree should not be allowed to continue. However any health care professionals protest they are ostracized and in some cases lose their job or are at least the job is threatened if they do not “keep their mouth shut”.

  8. Debra Steffen says:

    Like I always say;
    Big Ag poisons us with their food.
    Big Pharma is right behind them with drugs.
    Health Care has been replaced with “Illness Maintenance.”
    GREED AND POPULATION CONTROL IS THE PROBLEM!!!

  9. Wendy says:

    That’s what we get for issuing licenses to “protect the public” from “unqualified” individuals and companies. Doesn’t matter if you’re talking about medicine or flower arranging.

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