Friday, February 23, 2018

Bias, Corruption & Accountability

Researchers Question Findings of Some Correlational Studies

In a new study, researchers argue that correlational studies may not sufficiently account for alternative explanations, and offer suggestions for mitigating this danger.

If a Drug Company Publishes a Magazine, is it Journalism?

From Undark Magazine: Bayer, the German pharmaceutical and agricultural science conglomerate, has launched a digital magazine covering the ethical and social implications of new biotechnologies....

Drug Treatment of ADHD – Tenuous Scientific Basis

From Tidsskriftet: Over the past three decades, there has been a dramatic increase in the diagnosis and pharmacological treatment of ADHD. Recent systematic reviews reveal...

Pharma-Funded Charities v. Health and Human Services

From The Health Law & Policy Brief: Last month, Patient Services Inc. (PSI), a pharmaceutical industry-funded charity, launched a lawsuit against the Department of Health...

Pharma, Under Attack for Drug Prices, Started an Industry War

From The Washington Post: In 2017, numerous politicians, advocacy groups, and other stakeholders began to raise questions about the rising costs of prescription drugs. Under attack,...

Researchers Challenge Industry-Friendly Depression Guideline

Review of a new mixed depression guideline reveals financial bias of guideline developers and lack of evidence supporting recommendations for prescribing of antipsychotics.

The Unfortunate Experiment, Updated

From Fear and Loathing in Bioethics: A new fifteen-minute television documentary investigates New Zealand's "unfortunate experiment," a horrific case of nonconsensual experimentation at the National...

The Pharmaceutical Industry is No Stranger to Fake News

From STAT: The notion of "fake news" has recently become a widespread topic of discourse. However, the pharmaceutical industry has been using tactics that involve spreading...

Football Destroyed My Husband’s Mind

In this op-ed for The New York Times, Emily Kelly, the wife of former NFL player Rob Kelly, shares the devastating impact that a professional...

Unnecessary Medical Care: More Common Than You Might Think

From NPR: A recent report by the Washington Health Alliance has helped to quantify the epidemic of medical overtreatment and healthcare waste. "What the group found...

Problem Behaviors are Medicalized in White Children and Criminalized in Black Children

Race often determines whether school punishment or therapy and drugs will be used to address children’s problem behaviors.

Mental Illness Weaponry and Shrink Hypocrisy

In this piece for CounterPunch, Bruce Levine critiques the pervasive hypocrisy among U.S. mental health professionals, who on one hand claim they hope to abolish the...

PhRMA Ups Lobbying by 30 Percent This Year

From The Hill: The pharmaceutical industry's top trade group, the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), has increased its federal lobbying expenditures by 30...

We Pay a High Price for Unregulated Medical Devices

From The Lown Institute: New investigations and research are beginning to show the dangerous consequences resulting from the FDA's lack of oversight of medical devices. "It sounds crazy...

The Corruption of Medical Language

In this piece for The BMJ, Richard Smith emphasizes the need for clear, understandable academic writing that is accessible to general audiences. "Almost everything, I believe,...

New Study Challenges Impartiality of Peer Review

New research shows that more connected and well-known researchers are more likely to be published, even when they receive negative reviews.

Nature Still Battles Nurture in the World of Social Genomics

From Nature: In her new book, Social by Nature: The Promise and Peril of Sociogenomics, Catherine Bliss discusses the social context and potentially biodeterministic implications of the...

Researchers Expose Pharmaceutical Industry Misconduct and Corruption

Corruption of pharmaceutical industry sponsored clinical trials identified as a “major obstacle” facing evidence-based medicine.

Large Study Finds Epigenetic Changes Associated with Trauma Explained by Smoking

A new study suggests that epigenetic changes that have been associated with trauma may actually be due to environmental toxins.

Underestimating Social Determinants of Health Linked to Right-Wing Authoritarianism

Social determinants have been seen to have an equal, if not greater, influence on health as individual behaviors, yet this evidence is largely ignored. Researchers investigate why this is the case.

Mental Health Inc: A New Book by Art Levine

From AlterNet: A new book my Art Levine, Mental Health Inc: How Corruption, Lax Oversight and Failed Reforms Endanger Our Most Vulnerable Citizens, exposes the greed...

Writing Women Into Psychology

From Psychology Today: A recent study examining a sample of widely used social psychology textbooks found that the contributions of women and people of color...

Failed TB Vaccine Exposes Concerns Regarding Research Ethics

An investigation exposes violations to research ethics, finding that researchers failed to disclose risks and even misled government agencies.

Speaking Out Against Electric Shocks

Essentially what Choy et al are seeking in their editorial is the total suppression of information concerning the harmful and often permanent effects of high voltage electric shocks to the brain, thus implying that the very large number of individuals who report more extensive and persistent damage are not worth listening to.
deep brain stimulation

Brain Implants: Spinning the Trial Results to Protect the Product

The published report of the Broaden Trial of Deep Brain Stimulation for Depression whitewashed the results: although the efficacy results were negative, the investigators concluded that the therapy still showed "promise", and adverse events suffered by the patients were downplayed or attributed to the disease, and not the treatment. An in-depth investigation of how the trial results were spun, and interviews with patients that tell of harm done.

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