Exposed - Medication, Drug Companies and Mental Health Organizations

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My wife was just reading todays TheAge newspaper, and low and behold on the front page is all about how top mental health organizations have now jumped into bed officially with the major global drug companies. You wonder why I tell people to not trust physicians at face value, instead study them as they study you, because their intentions are not always in your best interest, but often their own best interests, and this just continues to prove my statements in regard to this.

IN OCTOBER 2004, the nation's most influential mental illness advocacy group signed a deal that financially tied it to some of the world's biggest pharmaceutical companies.

The so-called "Pharma Collaboration", unreported in the Australian media, linked the Mental Health Council of Australia directly to global pharmaceutical giants Pfizer, Eli Lilly, Glaxo SmithKline, Bristol Myers Squibb, Lundbeck, Wyeth and Astra Zeneca.

It has been a good deal for the non-profit council, which promotes itself as Australia's peak mental health group, providing 8 per cent of its total income. It also seems to have benefited the drug companies, which have a strong financial interest in selling medication to treat mental illness, especially the "new epidemic" of depression.

In an example of the close relationship that has developed between drug companies and the advocacy group, the council agreed to write and distribute a "health report" on young people and depression that was fully funded by Pfizer, the world's biggest drug company and maker of blockbuster antidepressant Zoloft. The Pfizer-funded report, released in early 2004 before the Pharma Collaboration deal was signed, included a survey that found young people were "ignoring the signs of depression".

The Mental Health Council was quoted saying young people were dismissive of depression, which was an illness that required professional treatment.The council's lobbying activities have also been supported by drug company money. A December 2004 council submission to the Federal Government calling for more investment in mental health was fully funded by Pfizer, Janssen-Cilag, Eli Lilly and Bristol Myers Squibb. Yet the council insists that it retains full editorial independence.

Depression is a major illness in Australia and awareness of its debilitating effects has risen markedly in recent years. Few suggest that antidepressant drugs do not have an important role to play in treatment. Yet the Mental Health Council of Australia's close links to drug companies, which have funded political lobbying and disease awareness campaigns, raise questions about whether the agendas of a consumer group and that of a multinational drug company are the same, and, more seriously, whether the enormous increase in prescriptions for antidepressant drugs in Australia in the past decade is at least in part due to pharmaceutical industry influence.
You might want to go and read the, as it goes on for four pages, and the above is only from the first page. Plenty more is exposed within this piece about the secret deals going on behind consumers to benefit nobody but the organizations and drug companies. In other words, drug companies don't give a flying rats arse whether the drugs are in your best interest or not, they just care about the sale and profit for themselves.

Don't be fooled that this is just an Australian thing, as more likely it is that Australia was just one of the last to come onboard with the drug companies, as the USA and Europe have been in cahoots with them for decades now... and most likely so has Australia, but we only find out about the more recent events.

Drug companies and most physicians do not necessarily have YOUR best interest at heart, instead their own salary and profit margins. Again, research your physician just as they research you. Any doctor that you walk into that is immediatly just throwing drugs at you, isn't much of a doctor in my opinion, because I have been to some of the best, and the best aren't necessarily the most expensive, more the doctors who look on both sides of the fence towards what is best for you, the patient, ie. natural alternatives or prescription, or a combination of both to limit the harm going into your body and the side effects caused that do little more than counter act, or make worse the symptoms.
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