U.S. drug companies do some wonderful things.  Heck, one could argue that drugs manufactured by Celgene and Millennium Pharmaceuticals have saved my life!

BUT, reports like this one reinforce what most of us already know:  Too much money is probably spent on marketing and not enough on research.  Check this out this report from a hard hitting investigative website, Medicynic:

Why Drugs are Expensive: Marketing Costs

August 10, 2012

Drug companies spend as much or more on marketing than they do on research.  In the first quarter of 2012 direct to consumer advertising approached 1 billion dollars.

The costs of marketing to doctors,  and this is admittedly old data, is reflected in this graph.

Today one would expect at least a 100% increment paralleling the increase in health care costs over the same period of time.

Aggressive marketing has been shown to effect doctor’s decisions and increase patient expenditures, and overall costs.  Guess who pays?

Medicynical Note:  Read the links for more details.

I share this post, not because it reveals any earth shattering insight, but because it is short and to the point.

Drug companies use marketing dollars for a lot of important things.  For example, grants that support organizations which help cancer patients, like the American Cancer Society, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and the International Myeloma Foundation.

And doctor education is an important aspect of introducing new drugs into the market.

So I ask you:  Is almost four billion dollars too much to spend on drug marketing this year?  

I will try and provide more information about this topic over the next few weeks to help patients and caregivers decide for themselves.

Feel good and keep smiling!  Pat

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