Selling Sickness: How the Drug Companies Are Turning Us All into Patients

Selling Sickness: How the Drug Companies Are Turning Us All into Patients

Selling Sickness: How the Drug Companies Are Turning Us All into Patients

Selling Sickness: How the Drug Companies Are Turning Us All into Patients

Synopsis

A controversial and provocative look at the way pharmaceutical companies are creating and marketing illness.

Excerpt

Thirty years ago the head of one of the world's best-known drug companies made some very candid comments. Close to retirement at the time, Merck's aggressive chief executive Henry Gadsden told Fortune magazine of his distress that the company's potential markets had been limited to sick people. Suggesting he'd rather Merck to be more like chewing gum maker Wrigley's, Gadsen said it had long been his dream to make drugs for healthy people. Because then, Merck would be able to 'sell to everyone.' Three decades on, the late Henry Gadsden's dream has come true.

The marketing strategies of the world's biggest drug companies now aggressively target the healthy and the well. The ups and downs of daily life have become mental disorders, common complaints are transformed into frightening conditions, and more and more ordinary people are turned into patients. With promotional campaigns that exploit our deepest fears of death, decay and disease, the $500 billion dollar pharmaceutical . . .

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