“Public Health” and “Medication Regulation”

I’ve used the phrase ‘medication regulation’ in the title as a self-explanatory term for the MHRA, which regulates medicines and medical devices in the UK.

There is something odd about the conduct of Public Health and the MHRA which is worrying. Both organisations are directly concerned with the health of the public, but approach it from different directions. The MHRA exists to ensure that therapies are absolutely as effective and safe as possible, whereas ‘Public Health’ is concerned with stopping people needing medications in the first place.

What is odd is that the MHRA requires absolutely correct science – factual science, clinical studies, trials, etc – before it will approve a medication or device. Only drugs companies have the money and expertise to do the evaluations, and they are required to pay large sums of money to get their products approved. And it takes a long time. Essentially, however, the process is about precision.

The case with ‘Public Health’ is entirely the opposite. No precision is required. On the contrary, wild claims can be made on the merest of evidence. Junk ‘science’ is regularly employed. Also, the evidence is wildly exaggerated. Even worse is the use of advertising methods to create fear and aversion. Who can forget the advert which showed red veins turning black or tumours growing on a cigarette, or the false graphics on fag packets, or the false statements like ‘smoking kills’?

The MHRA side of ‘the health of the public’ is precise and scientific, but the “Public Health” side of ‘the health of the public’ is riddled with lies and trickery.

Since the bodies in the UK who are controlling “Public Health” are directly linked to the UK Health Dept, and to the EU Health Dept, and to the UN Health Dept, it is reasonable to say that ALL THESE BODIES ARE UNETHICAL. If they are unethical, they are therefore inhabited by charlatans. If so, then what is the BMA doing supporting and encouraging them?

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Is it any wonder that the NHS costs are out of control? It is a classic case of ‘infinite time and resources’. I remember watching a play on TV a couple of decades ago. (What are ‘plays’ called these days?). In this play, a scientist had invented a serum, or whatever, which stopped the ageing process. Thus, if a person took this serum, he would for ever remain at the age at which he started to use the serum. But the serum was incredibly tricky and expensive to produce. Naturally, the discoverer administered the serum to himself, and, he was the only one who knew the ‘formula’. The Government decided to fund him to find a way to cut the cost and expedite the production. The catch 22 in the play was that, since he personally was virtually immortal, he needed not to hurry – and he didn’t. Years passed, and he kept telling the Authorities that he was ‘making progress’. Decades passed, and still ‘making progress’. Then he got knocked over by a bus and was killed. Well, I’m not sure about the ending, but it was something like that.

The NHS is a monopoly, as is the MHRA and the BMA. All are engaged in a monopoly. Costs increase, prices increase, efficacy declines, bureaucracy increases, and there is no end to it. The Blair Government saw that and introduced targets. But targets are useless if the underlying practices are not under control. They are top down and not bottom up. According to that argument, Tobacco Control is wonderful, because it is, in theory, bottom up in that it stops people needing NHS services in the first place, as might Booze Control and Fat Control. The problem is that these ‘Controls’ will not stop people getting old and infirm, and being an even greater cost to the NHS than ever were smoking, drinking and eating too much.

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Is there any sort of solution?

I don’t think so, as things stand. A combination of reforms might do it, but it would require the exclusion in the first instance of ‘medical professionals’ since they would not have the required expertise in matters of finance, statistics and systems.

First, one might accept that the longer people survive, the costlier they are likely to be in old age. Forcing people to stop smoking, drinking and eating will not change that situation – in fact, if the charlatan projections of ‘health benefits’ and ‘smoking/drinking/eating related diseases’ are correct, then the health costs of old age can only become greater and greater.

Does that mean that smoking, drinking and eating are to be encouraged to cut NHS costs? Of course not! Advise but do not force. No sin taxes. Scrap tobacco control since it is expensive and increases the nation’s health costs. Stop academics wasting student fees on their pet ideologies.

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But above all, the discrepancy between the NHS MHRA demand for accuracy and the NHS PUBLIC HEALTH inaccuracy must be sorted out. Public health is not a product to be advertised like toothpaste.

Thus, obscene pictures on tobacco packets must only be TRUE pictures of real conditions caused by smoking. It is unethical advertising to show pictures of a condition, like mouth cancer, which has not been proven to be caused by smoking, in the same way that an improvement in the cleanliness of your washing using product X needs to be proven to be the case. People have complained to the Advertising Standard NGO and been fobbed off. That Organisation too is corrupt. If fact, it is hard to find a Government Organisation which is not corrupt.

Why? Because of the politicisation of the Civil Service. Our Civil Service used to be the best in the world precisely because of its political neutrality. Now, it is riddled with Zealots of one sort or another. What needs to be done is to appoint Directors who will ensure that the Civil Service is politics-free. In the New Civil Service, only actual facts will determine policy. No hype, no trickery, no politicking, no academia imput unless verified.

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The list of needs is almost endless, but only because politicians have allowed Zealots to over-ride their common sense, and because they rely upon passing fads to keep them in office. But some 50 MPs stood and got elected under false pretences. They claimed to be Conservatives, Labour or Liberal when, in fact, the were anti-tobacco Zealots – nothing more and nothing less. They may well have been supported financially by ASH, the BMA etc, for all we know. The potential for corruption is manifest.

 

Readers should note my phrase ‘potential for corruption’, for is not the bolded word precisely the same as ‘might’, ‘could’, ‘may’, which words almost always appear in academic tobacco studies?  Meanwhile, because of these words ‘might’, ‘could’ and ‘may’, people who enjoy tobacco are being persecuted in the world-wide ascendency of Fascism and Totalitarianism.

I must make it clear that the words ‘Fascism and Totalitarianism’ are not intended to convey the meaning of Naziism and Communism, but the ideas of “The State is All-Powerful” and “One Size Fits All”. Both these idea belong to the EU.

They must be defeated.

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2 Responses to ““Public Health” and “Medication Regulation””

  1. brainyfurball Says:

    i realise that the following is over-long, but this is an issue I feel very strongly about. …..

    “The proliferating connections between doctors and the drug industry have brought the credibility of clinical medicine to an unprecedented crisis. Corporate actions that have placed profit over public health have become regular news. High profile examples include the misrepresentation of research on rofecoxib and on the use of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors in children. Recently, two respected scientists who work for a drug company wrote that the problem of conflict of interest “could well erode the credibility of the entire enterprise of academic medicine, if not properly and promptly addressed*
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2432130/

    And…

    A long extract from a select committee introduction to an investigation into the dealings of the pharmaceutical industry. A hundred years ago, the last hearing called the industry ‘evil.’ Nothing has changed in this time – in fact, it is far, far worse.

    “The Department of Health has for too long optimistically assumed that the interests of health and of the industry are as one. This may reflect the fact that the Department sponsors the industry as well as looking after health. The result is that the industry has been left to its own devices for too long. It may be relevant that this is the first major select committee inquiry into the pharmaceutical industry for almost one hundred years – the last was undertaken by the Select Committee on Patent Medicines which reported in August 1914.
    The consequences of lax oversight is that the industry’s influence has expanded and a number of practices have developed which act against the public interest. The industry affects every level of healthcare provision, from the drugs that are initially discovered and developed through clinical trials, to the promotion of drugs to the prescriber and the
    patient groups, to the prescription of medicines and the compilation of clinical guidelines.
    We heard allegations that clinical trials were not adequately designed – that they could be designed to show the new drug in the best light – and sometimes fail to indicate the true effects of a medicine on health outcomes relevant to the patient. We were informed of several high-profile cases of suppression of trial results. We also heard of selective
    publication strategies and ghost-writing. The suppression of negative clinical trial findings leads to a body of evidence that does not reflect the true risk:benefit profile of the medicine in question. Guidance produced by NICE and others relies on the published evidence. If all the evidence is not published, or if negative findings are hidden, accurate guidance cannot be issued and prescribers cannot make truly evidence-based decisions.
    Once licensed, medicines are intensely promoted to prescribers. The very high costs of developing a new drug make it vital that a company recoups its costs as quickly as possibly after licensing. Coupled with company-sponsored information from medical journals and supplements, ‘medical education’ materials, advertisements and sponsorship to attend
    conferences, workshops and other events, it is little wonder that prescribing practices are affected. GPs are particular targets; they have more prescribing freedom than hospital specialists and their prescribing practices are not limited to hospital formularies.
    Promotion of medicines to patients and links between drug companies and patient organisations may add to this problem, leading patients to demand new drugs from their
    doctors. The problem is far less to do with any particular activity; rather the volume may distort prescribing practice. At the heart of the problem may be the trend for the industry to become ever more driven by its marketing force. The most immediately worrying consequence of the problems described above is the unsafe use of drugs. Over-prescription of the COX-2 inhibitors, Vioxx and Celebrex, has been linked to thousands of deaths and many more cases of heart failure. These case
    illustrate a series of failures. Manufacturers are known to havesuppressed certain trials for these drugs in the US and may have done the same in the UK. In addition, there were inadequacies in the licensing and post-marketing surveillance procedures and excessive promotion of the drugs to doctors.”
    http://www.publications.parliament.uk/…/cmhealth/42/42.pdf

  2. artbylisabelle Says:

    Reblogged this on artbylisabelle and commented:
    How out of control are those that control our Public Health, as in our, mine and yours.

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