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Ben Goldacre’s prescription drugs keynote offers a passionate and compelling discussion on the pharmaceutical industry. He discusses the various ways in which the industry withholds important information on the trials and tests conducted with new drugs on humans. The unreported information, which Goldacre describes as “missing in action,” results in hundreds of deaths that doctors could have prevented had they been properly informed on the effects of a multitude of prescription drugs.
He introduces the term “publication bias,” which refers to the unflattering data that gets lost or that is conveniently slipped under a rug, never to be seen again. This phenomenon is occurring far too often. Goldacre describes it as a “disaster” because doctors cannot access important information about the effects of the prescription drugs they are prescribing.
His prescription drugs keynote highlights one of the many flaws of the pharmaceutical industry in the world today. He believes that all prescription drug-related deaths can be avoided once it becomes mandatory for every for every test and trial conducted on humans to be published.