Thursday, April 23, 2015
Medical Incentives for Doctors from Big Pharma
Drug companies have long since influenced Doctors decisions to prescribe certain medications over others. For instance if it were to come down to a generic brand medication and one that happens to be a name brand medication with their logo plastered all over the physician's office in the form of pens/posters/clipboards/etc. which do you believe will be more likely to be prescribed? I for a fact know that my Doctor has pushed medications on me before that I had no desire to take or even idea to ask for. I didn't even know what the medication was for, but lo and behold after I had gotten my script because my Doctor was completely sure I "was in need" of the medication I began to notice little things around his office advertising for the medication in question. I had simply went in for a routine checkup and a suspected ear infection and I left with two separate prescriptions, one that I knew I needed and the other I have since stopped taking. When I even asked my Doctor why he had prescribed the medication to me in the first place his response was, "You seemed a tad flustered and you fidgeted quite a bit, and with the high number of college students in here lately I assumed you had the same condition they had, as it happens to people your age." That is not a good enough reason to give someone a medication they never needed in the first place, especially when the patient in question has heart defects, which the drug has been known to irritate and cause to worsen as time goes on. I went and researched the medication and found out it is usually only prescribed by a psychiatrist and not a family physician. Further proof of Doctors being paid off for prescribing certain medications over others can be documented by the Physician Payments Sunshine Act, passed in 2011 under the AFFORDABLE CARE ACT as a move toward transparency in the relationship between physicians and the industry. For the first time, doctors and pharmaceutical companies are legally required to log these payments on the CMS Open Payments Database, released in September.