Is medical research now beyond redemption?

“… without so called ‘evidence’ there is no seat at the guideline table. This is the fundamental ‘commissioning bias,’ the elephant in the room, because the drug industry controls and funds most research. So the drug industry and EBM [evidence based medicine] have set about legitimising illegitimate diagnoses and then widening drug indications, and now doctors can prescribe a pill for every ill.”

This article has relevance to the field of mental healthcare – not least in relation to the debate over “evidence-based” treatment and the associated difference between efficacy (as measured in the artificial, controlled world of randomised control trials, for example) and effectiveness (as measured in the messy, real world of clinical practice). It comes from Dr. Malcolm Kendrick, who writes:

“Below, I have copied an entire article from the BMJ, written by Dr Des Spence, who is a fellow Scottish GP. We communicate from time to time, and share a general view that medicine is heading in a very unfortunate direction with overdiagnosis and over-treatment/polypharmacy becoming a massive problem.

This is driven, in the main part, by the pharmaceutical industry. An industry that would like to see the entire population of the world taking medication every day….. forever. To achieve this they have, effectively, grabbed hold of medical research and twisted it to their own ends.

Anyway, please read this article. It encapsulates much of what I feel, and I believe it needs a wider audience …”

You can read more from here.

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