Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News
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Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News
Pharmaguy curates and provides insights into selected drug industry news and issues.
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John Oliver Shreds Pharmaceutical Industry Over Massive Opioid Crisis

John Oliver Shreds Pharmaceutical Industry Over Massive Opioid Crisis | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News | Scoop.it

With more than 250 million prescriptions written each year, there are allegedly enough opioid painkillers going around to give a bottle to every American adult and still have plenty left over. And that has John Oliver fuming.

In HBO’s “Last Week Tonight,” Oliver ripped into the pharmaceutical industry for years of shady and deceptive practices that he said got Americans hooked on drugs. In a clip played during the show, one industry expert claimed the addiction was really “pseudo-addiction,” where patients weren’t actually addicted to the drug but just seeking relief. 

“Wow, that is so convenient,” Oliver said. “That is like Chipotle going, ‘Have you heard of this fascinating new thing called pseudo-diarrhea? It looks a lot like diarrhea but it’s not diarrhea and the cure may actually be more tacos.”

Part of the problem, an expert in the segment said, was that alternative options for pain weren’t always available or covered by insurance. 

“Alternative pain treatments should be at least as easy to find as Waffle Houses,” Oliver said. “Which, like heroin, are both hazardous to your health and dangerously addictive.”

Pharma Guy's insight:

Related article: “How a One Paragraph Letter to the Editor Launched the Opioid Epidemic”; http://sco.lt/5mYWrx

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Watch John Oliver absolutely destroy Dr. Oz

Watch John Oliver absolutely destroy Dr. Oz | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News | Scoop.it

This past week has been rather embarrassing for celebrity health guru Mehmet Oz — or just Dr. Oz to fans. He was taken to task in front of Senate for selling, in his own words, a "magic weight loss cure for every body type." Oz's testimony was mainly a whirlwind of self-contradiction, telling Senators that there was no such magical cure after all.


Last night, John Oliver walked through the highlights of the proceedings, adding, "If you want to keep spouting this bullshit, that's fine, but don't call your show Dr. Oz. Call it Check his Shit Out with some Guy Named Mehmet."

But Oliver's main complaint here isn't with the weight loss-peddling doctor. It's with the organizations, lawmakers, lobbyists and the powerful dietary supplement industry that allow him to do that. "Dr. Oz is just a symptom of the problem," he said, explaining the relative and terrifying freedom that supplement companies have when it comes to giving us things like Dr. Oz's snake oil.

Pharma Guy's insight:


Once again, it's the fake news shows that inform us more about the issues than real news shows. Oliver does a great job, BTW, of explaining why the FDA cannot regulate dietary substances. For more on that, read: If FDA were as Powerful as FTC

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