Look forward to reading this. Along with the media racket there’s now many offshoot sites dabbling in giving out medical advice. There’s a local honey / allergy media frenzy that got me especially riled up, and an interior design blog (with a cooking segment) that hosts some pretty bad advice. I hope you continue your quest to debunk and maybe someday you can address these:
Dear Dr Goldacre,
Have enjoyed your column in the Guardian and just ordered both your books.
I share most of your sentiments about Pharma except for the fact that I see them as merely business entities trying to make money any way they can.
The real tragedy is that doctors(many of them from the public sector) who choose to associate with Pharma by doing collaborative Clinical Trials with them have never bothered to train themselves to do research (while will add another couple of years to their training).
Pharma’s on the other hand employ professionals such as methodologist and statisticians who know how to conduct and analyse a trial.
It is no wonder that these hopelessly befuddled doctors then surrender their rights to Pharma and do as they are told- they are probably too afraid to admit their ignorance.
So first, Physician Train Thyself!
Great book so far. Well balanced between the scientific facts and ability to understand. I hope it gets a wide coverage and starts a snowball towards properly manages clinical tests and use of data, must get back to the book.
I wanted to buy the book in kindle edition, but couldn’t.
I have an account on Amazon.com, where the kindle edition will only become available in January. Amazon.co.uk
proudly states that “This title is available to UK customers only”
There might be reasons for Harper Collins to segment the market in such a way, but you as the author loose.
To everyone who’s looking foreward to the read: you will definitely not “enjoy” it. Instead, be prepared to get very, very angry. Especially that chapter “Missing Data” really left me in a state of, say, uncomfort. But – better like this than still knowing noting at all about those oddities. Many thanks to the author.
Just read the applause for the German IQWiG agency on p. 169 and found myself grinning, because:
What one should know about IQWiG is, that rumours went round the agency’s first director, Peter Sawicki, a diabetologist, had been sent off just because he claimed exactly what is claimed in Bad Pharma’s first chapter: access to complete and unspoiled data. The published reasons sounded different, it was a smudgy story of alleged extravagances and waste, such as illegitime use of official cars and so on – nothing of that was confirmed to be true in the following investigation. It is a plain fortune, that his successor, Juergen Windeler, an epidemiologist, also turns out to be pretty courageous.
Why oh why do you do you give Amazon your support by selling your book when you care so much about the wrongs perpetrated by pharmaceutical companies, the government, etc? We sell your book but cannot possibly compete with Amazons aggressive undercutting of prices, and why do you think that might be? Independent booksellers not only pay taxes that, guess what, contribute to the NHS and they also pay rates which help local government provide services to the community. Does Amazon have any morals regarding the citizens of any country…of course not. And we will be the ultimate losers.