Profit To Be Made In Sickness And Poor Health4 months, 1 week ago
Posted on Oct 11, 2018, 6 p.m.
The medical industry does not make money off of healthy people, it’s just a plain obvious fact. Keep in mind the medical industry includes more than just your doctor or hospitals, it includes drug companies, pharmacies, medical device manufacturers, and the federal government, just to list a few.
While it’s true that your doctors and most of the people at the local hospital want to see you feeling better, the rest of the agencies have deep vested interest in you staying sick and fat. To some that may sound inconceivable, but you are actually seen as a walking dollar sign to line their pockets, when you’re healthy you don’t need their services or products.
Let’s just look at some of the changes; for instance take a look at old photos of Americans during WWII and notice how very few are overweight, let alone obese. The vast majority of people in the 1940s were thin and relatively healthy. Now let’s compare that to today, brace yourself, over 74% of Americans are overweight, in fact obesity is an epidemic. To those that may say it was because USA had just come out of the Great Depression and there wasn’t as much food consider this, by the 1940s hunger in the USA was widely considered to be a solved problem and remained that way until the mid 1960s.
So what happened in the 1960s to change everything, and just how does that affect health today one might ask. There were at least 2 major events that changed the health of the US population:
1) First steps involved starvation; the US government stayed out of food distribution and let each state give food surpluses to the poor and needy. State governments acted as distributor of food stuffs and that played a key role in the elimination of hunger. In the mid 1960s many states had ended food distribution and turned to an early form of food stamps.
2) During the 1960s President Johnson signed into law the Medicare and Medicaid programs which created Medicare Part A to pay hospital care and limited skilled nursing and home health care, along with Optional Medicare Part B which helps to pay for physician care. Medicaid side of law is a separate program to assist states in covering long term care and provide health insurance coverage for certain classes of the poor and disabled. These program are great, and many have benefited from them, in fact lifespan has increased from 69.92 years to 78.74, that is the positive side to such programs, however longer lifespans does not mean healthier.
Health spending has increased from $74.6 billion in the 1970s to $3.3 trillion in 2016, which includes spending on any healthcare and related activities. Naturally the population has increased and there has been significant increases in inflation that helped to push that cost up. But those factors do not account for the total increase in spending. Based on per capita basis health spending has increased nearly 29 fold over the past 40 years from $355 per person in 1970 to $10,348 in 2016. Eliminating inflation and using constant 2016 dollars that increase was around 6 fold from $1,762 in 1970 to $10,348 in 2016; spending has risen by 10 times over four decades. Which leads to the next question, who benefits from this exponential growth, and why does it matter some may wonder.
One might think that those paying for the health care would benefit, and surely we have in many ways; however we haven’t been the biggest beneficiaries. No, that distinction goes to the medical industry, it may surprise some to find out that the medical industry now makes up one seventh of the economy.
With big benefits comes some negatives, those negatives can play a huge role in the general public’s ability to get and remain healthy. The food stamp program stands case in point. During the Obama administration the number of people using the program increased 70%. A study investigated how healthy these people were compared to the general population after his administration, researchers found that people using the food stamp program were more likely to be obese than other groups including those not receiving benefits even though they were poor enough to qualify for assistance.
The very same program designed to help is actually contributing to health problems. With these programs it seems that the medical industry is reaping the most benefits. Such programs put significant restrictions on the type of medical care one can get as well. Such as if one were to try to use Medicare on alternative doctor fees the charge won’t be covered. To some the reason for this seems clear, it is in their best interest to keep money flowing in a certain direction, the last thing they want is for you to get healthy because at that point you no longer need them and the money stops flowing.
Where are all the promised cures, where are all the breakthroughs going, why is it cheaper to eat McDonalds than a healthy meal, why aren’t there extra taxes or other interventions on things such as soda to help fight obesity, why aren’t physical activities and healthy lifestyle choices not being promoted more, why are cigarettes that are known killers still legal, why is healthcare allowed to become more and more unaffordable, why do certain areas not have access to healthcare, why are CBDs on Schedule one given recent acknowledgments, GMOs and pesticide use, why is fluoride still in water and salt, the list of questions can go on and on. It does make one wonder, and adds weight to arguments that the government doesn’t actually want you to have treatments that will actually cure illnesses, sure treating symptoms is fine because that still keeps you coming back for more, but not cures.
Other than antibiotics, which really don’t work that well anymore due to overuse and resistance, name a drug available on the market that actually cures a disease. If there was one, where did it go? It seems as if anytime one is heard talking about something with promise to cure anything, it vanishes. Even the ones under research showing great promise, what happens to them all? Look at supplement or any alternative medicine manufacturer, simply using those words brings the FDA down on them, albeit some justified. There are treatments out there that can help cure. The FDA knows it, the drug companies know it, but your doctor probably doesn’t unless he uses or studied alternative medicine.
Medicine is big business profit, and both the FDA and Big Pharma don’t want you to have access to these cures. Just look at CBDs, it is well known that the can cure certain ailments, that is why they were commonly prescribed as medicines by doctors until the government stepped in and classified them as illegal. Today CBDs are being developed once again as they are aware they can cure, and the FDA is approving drug company products that contain CBDs. The DEA still classifies them as a controlled substance even though it is well known that they don’t even meet the lowest standard for this classification, so why are they still there? Profit and control. Changing overall classification would open up drug companies to alternative competition that they certainly couldn’t survive. By only using a small portion of CBDs their products will likely alleviate symptoms, but are not likely to cure anything; making this another ploy and perfect drug helping you just enough to keep you coming back for more. The DEA has limited rescheduling of CBD to FDA approved Epidolex, yes that is true and wonderful; the downside is that it means only FDA approved CBD is allowed, keeping it all still under their control. CBDs don’t have the same affinity and effects as THC to which the HHS, FDA, and DEA have long acknowledged yet they keep it on Schedule 1, which needs to change.
The FDA rules with an iron fist, another most over controlled illness is cancer. Should any company or person dare to suggest their product may treat cancer successfully they will experience full force of the FDA coming down on them. Such as in 2007 when 2 promising and non-toxic anticancer drugs receiving an FDA Advisory Committee voting of 13-4 in favor of approval getting torpedoed by the agency. Why? Those 4 votes came against came from powerful members of the oncology establishment who launched unprecedented public relations campaigns accusing the majority of incompetence and naivete. Their efforts were successful and we were denied access to the safer cancer treatment until 2010 when the FDA finally succumbed to public pressure and approved the drug. Money, power, greed, and control.
Let’s look at Junovan now, another sunk by the FDA, the drug demonstrated increased survival rates from children with bone cancer. It was dismissed as the odds of effectiveness were only 94% in a statistical test rather than 95%, the 1% was used to justify a 12-2 no vote by the committee. The FDA Office of Oncology Products wrote in 2007 at that time it would be years before the full impact of these decisions and how many cancer patients will have had their lives cut short while lawmakers obsess over safety reforms, meanwhile no one is holding the government agency accountable for complicity in stalling therapies. Well guess what, it’s been many years later now, and we still do not have access to this drug, and realistically many more if one were to care to be completely honest.
Maintaining a healthy lifestyle which includes being active and consuming a healthy well balanced diet is especially important, particularly if you can’t afford a doctor that has an alternative mind. Try to make a change by opting to elect officials who aren’t beholden to drug companies that contribute millions of dollars to political campaigns on both sides of the board can help. It’s hard enough to stay healthy as it is these days, but it’s even harder when those who say they’re looking out for your best interest offer you nothing but chemicals designed to only treat symptoms see you as a walking dollar sign. It’s all about the money, power, greed, and control, this needs to change.
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Janet Poppendieck "Introduction, Chpt 1". Sweet Charity?: Emergency Food and the End of Entitlement. Penguine.