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Our Daily Meds : How the Pharmaceutical Companies Transformed Themselves into Slick Marketing Machines and Hooked the Nation on Prescription Drugs

Our Daily Meds : How the Pharmaceutical Companies Transformed Themselves into Slick Marketing Machines and Hooked the Nation on Prescription Drugs
Melody Petersen
New York : Sarah Crichton Books, 2008
HD9666.5 .P415 2008

In Our Daily Meds, Melody Petersen connects the dots to show for the first time how corporate salesmanship has triumphed over science inside the biggest pharmaceutical companies and, in turn, how this promotion-driven industry has taken over the practice of medicine and is changing American life.

In the last thirty years, the big pharmaceutical companies have transformed themselves into marketing machines, selling medicines as if they were Coca-Cola or Cadillacs. They pitch drugs with video games and soft cuddly toys for children; publicize them in churches and subways, at NASCAR races and state fairs. They've become experts at promoting fear of disease, just so they can sell us hope.

No question: drugs can save lives. But the relentless marketing that has enriched corporate executives and sent stock prices soaring has come with frightening hidden costs. Prescription pills taken as directed by physicians are estimated to kill one American every five minutes. And that figure doesn't reflect the damage done as the overmedicated take to the roads.

This new episode in the ageless story of the battle between good and evil has potentially life-changing consequences for everyone, not just the 65 percent of Americans who unscrew a prescription cap every day. An industry with the promise to help so many is now leaving a legacy of needless harm.

Quoted from dustjacket.