The pharmaceutical industry's power doesn't come cheap. The industry has spent more than 800 million on lobbyist and political campaigns since 1998. also more than 3,000 people have done lobbying work for the industry during the same time period (5 ).
Pharmaceutical firms marketing and administrative cost are now around thirty percent of their revenue. Researched and development is twelve percent of revenue. The industry claims it spend $500 million on each new drug, but analyst believe the figure is closer to 100 million (6).
According to U.S. Congress's Office of Technology Assessment (OTA) the pharmaceutical industry spends 11 billion on promotion, and 10 billion developing new drugs(7 ).
45,000 sales reps call on 550,000 doctors less than five percent of these reps have training in pharmacy or pharmacology. Doctors got information on drugs from either sales reps or the Physicians' Desk Reference(8 ).
Of the information on new drugs put out by the Pharmaceutical industry. 57 percent had little or no educational value and 44 percent would have led to improper prescribing practices. An other study showed that as much as 41% of the reports from industry-sponsored educational symposiums. published in the medical literature included misleading claims (9 ).
The New England Journal of Medicine said close to 95 percent of doctors in the USA got free food, beverages, drug samples, sports tickets, or other benefits from drug company sales representatives. a professor at Tufts University School of Medicine said "The whole notion of 'benefit to the patient' is too lax," he said. "Just because a pharmaceutical company gives medical students stethoscopes doesn't mean they should take them." and "Giving a patient free samples means the doctor has to finish off the course of treatment with a prescription," (10 ).
Also doctor's points of view can impact their advice. An example is fourteen percent of physicians believe it is acceptable to withhold information about birth control, abortion and sedating dying patients. Also 29 percent felt they were under no obligation to tell people were they can go to get care they don't approve of(11 ).
A study showed that some doctors do not inform patients when they receive abnormal test results from medical procedures. These test include mammograms, pap smears, cholesterol tests and red blood cell counts (12 ).