Intended for healthcare professionals


Drug companies are incentivised to profit not to improve health, says report

BMJ 2018; 363 doi: (Published 16 October 2018) Cite this as: BMJ 2018;363:k4351
  1. Melanie Newman
  1. London, UK

Government funding for health innovation is subsidising drug industry profits while providing little public health benefit, a report from leading health economists says.1

Most new drugs are not meeting public needs while economic and regulatory incentives have created a “highly inefficient pharmaceutical sector” which spends more on marketing than research and development, and focuses the research it does do on profits, the report explains.

This leads to prohibitively high prices, but also to the sidelining of treatments aimed at prevention or cure in favour of drugs with long term, high volume sales potential.

In …

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