Panaceia or Hygeia

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Archive for November, 2008

Taliban’s super success: opium

Posted by Colin Rose on November 28, 2008

If it weren’t for heroin addiction the Taliban would not exist and we would not be fighting a war in Afghanistan. Until we conquer the problem of addiction in our society there will always be criminals, terrorists and drug companies preying on the misery of addicts. Another example: instead of dealing with junk food addiction we would rather spend $many billions on drugs to treat its symptoms. The recent report of the JUPITER trial, funded by AstraZeneca and really an infomercial for Crestor, is a good example. No attempt was made to treat the addiction of the mostly overweight or obese subjects in trial. Only a drug was tested to treat the metabolic manifestations of the addiction, like “dyslipidemia” and CRP. Consequently many of the subjects became diabetic.


Taliban’s super success: opium
KIRK KRAEUTLER NEW YORK TIMES
The Gazette
28 Nov 2008

UNITED NATIONS  Afghanistan has produced so much opium in recent years that the Taliban are cutting back poppy cultivation and stockpiling raw opium to support prices and preserve a major source of financing for the insurgency, says the head of the…read more…

Posted in addiction, diabetes, Type 2, drugs, junk food, obesity, statins | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Cardiac disease threatens diabetics

Posted by Colin Rose on November 26, 2008

Dr. Terrence Ruddy, chief of cardiology at the University of Ottawa Heart Institute, says the increasing number of people with diabetes is a major concern across the medical profession.

“The increasing number with diabetes is directly related to the increasing number with obesity,” he says. “We have an epidemic of obesity in young and older people. In older people, that is giving them diabetes now. In younger people, it will give them diabetes in the next 20 to 40 years.” It’s vital to reduce obesity, “not just for 40- to 50-year-olds but in 10 to 20-year-olds,” he says. “We need more money flowing into educational programs focused on lifestyle changes — increased activity, appropriate diet and weight loss in young people. Decrease obesity to decrease diabetes.”

Yet at least 500 cardiologists around the world were paid by AstraZeneca to take part in JUPITER, a clinical “trial” of Crestor in which most subjects were overweight or obese and NO attempt was made to reduce their weights. 1.5% per year became diabetic due to their inflamed excess visceral fat. Probably at least US$500 million flowed into this “trial” with NO “educational programs focused on lifestyle changes”.

Doctors pay lip service to the need to fight obesity but money talks. Those cardiologists probably received at least $1000 per subject to enroll them in the JUPITER “trial”. Why would they dare to insist upon lifestyle change first before enrolling the subject and forgo this income? Members of the “JUPITER Study Group” presumably overseeing the “trial” for AstraZeneca were probably paid $100,000 each for their “consultation”. Why would they insist on lifestyle change first before agreeing to participate?

 


Cardiac disease threatens diabetics
IRIS WINSTON CANWEST NEWS SERVICE
The Gazette
26 Nov 2008

Just one year after Dale Frayling was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, he suffered his first heart attack. Four months later, he had a second, more severe attack followed by bypass surgery. That was 11 years ago. The Saskatoon resident, now 57, has…read more…

 

Also blogged here: 1, 2


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Here is the list of the cardiologists paid to participate in the JUPITER study who care more about money than advising patients on the best way to prevent atherosclerosis and diabetes.

Paul M Ridker, M.D., Eleanor Danielson, M.I.A., Francisco A.H. Fonseca, M.D., Jacques Genest, M.D., Antonio M. Gotto, Jr., M.D., John J.P. Kastelein, M.D., Wolfgang Koenig, M.D., Peter Libby, M.D., Alberto J. Lorenzatti, M.D., Jean G. MacFadyen, B.A., Børge G. Nordestgaard, M.D., James Shepherd, M.D., James T. Willerson, M.D., Robert J. Glynn, Sc.D., for the JUPITER Study Group

Appendix. JUPITER Clinical Sites

Argentina 253: Altamirano J, Berrizbeitia M, Boskis P, Colombo H, Cuadrado J, Cuneo
C, Diaz M, Esper R, Fernandez A, Foye R, Hershson A, Kuschnir E, La Greca R,
Lorenzatti A, Lozada A, Luciardi H, Luquez H, Maffei L, Majul C, Marin M, Muntaner
J, Nul D, Paolasso E, Rey R, Rodenas P, Rodriguez P, Rojas C, Telsolin P, Vita N,
Belgium 487: Adrianes G, Argento O, Bacart P, Baeck L, Baguet J, Balthazar Y, Battello
G, Behets J, Beke P, Bemden S, Berwouts P, Boermans P, Bolly F, Borms J, Boulad M,
Boulanger L, Bous J, Boxstael R, Brands Y, Buyse L, Calozet Y, Camps K, Capiau L,
Celis H, Coucke F, D’Argent F, De Beeck G, De Meulemeester M, De Praeter K, De
Rouck S, Delcourt A, Delvaux J, Demanet E, Derijcke M, Deruyck C, Devaux J, Dupont
C, Duyse J, Erpicum L, Gilio C, Gillet A, Grosjean J, Heeren J, Henry G, Heyvaert F,
Hollanders G, Hutsebaut A, Janssens P, Lannoy H, Ledoux C, Legros P, Leliaert R,
Martens R, Maury O, Mehuys G, Michaux J, Migeotte A, Mortelmans J, Mulders N,
Parijs P, Peer W, Pieters E, Reynders P, Riet D, Robert P, Stee J, Teheux J, Teuwen J,
Timmermans B, Tshinkulu M, Vantroyen D, Veevaete M, Vercruysse K, Vereecken G,
Vermeersch L, Vernijns J, Verspecht E, Vinck G, Vrancken F, Watte G, Weymans J,
Windmolders S, Ziekenhuis J, Ziekenhuis P, Brazil 327: Albuquerque D, Barbosa E,
Bertolami M, Blacher C, Brasileiro A, Eliaschewitz F, Esteves J, Feitosa G, Filho H,
Filho R, Fonseca F, Forti A, Francischetti E, Franco R, Gomes M, Gross J, Jardim P,
Kohlmann O, Loures-Vale A, Magalhaes M, Maia L, Moriguchi E, Nogueira P, Oigman W,
Repetto G, Saraiva J, Xavier H, Bulgaria 197: Balanescu S, Benov H, Chompalova B,
Donova T, Gocheva N, Goudev A, Grigorov M, Gruev T, Hergeldjieva V, Marchev S,
Mihov A, Pasheva V, Penev A, Popov A, Raev D, Sirakova V, Slavcheva A, Stoikov A,
Stoilov R, Tisheva S, Todorov G, Torbova S, Uzunangelov J, Canada 2020: Achyutna G,
Akhras R, Arun N, Barriere G, Bartlett J, Behiels S, Bell A, Bergeron J, Berlingieri J,
Bhamjee H, Bodok-Nutzati R, Booth W, Boyd C, Brault S, Bruckswaiger D, Bukovy B,
Campbell G, Carlson B, Cha J, Chehayeb R, Cheng W, Chilvers M, Chouinard G,
Chow W, Conter H, Conway J, Craig D, Dattani I, Del Grande R, Dharamshi S,
Dickson M, Dion D, Dowell A, Drexler J, Dube S, Dupont A, Dworkin B, Fields L,
Filteau P, Gardiner E, Gervais B, Gillis G, Girard R, Goldman H, Gorfinkel I, Goulet S,
Greenspoon A, Gritter R, Gupta A, Gupta M, Habib R, Harding R, Hart R, Henein S,
Henry D, Hirsch A, Ho K, Hoag G, Houde D, Howlett E, Ing G, Jadd J, Janes J, Jardine F,
Johnston T, Kanani S, Kazimirski M, Kelly A, Klajner F, Kooy J, Lalani A, Lam S,
Laranjeiro J, Larose D, Leiter L, Leung W, Li J, Lowe D, Luces K, Ma P, MacKinnon R,
Martinho V, Matangi M, McCrossin M, McIsaac J, McMullen W, Mehta P, Meunier M,
Misik K, Ng A, Nigro F, Noronha L, O’Mahony W, Pandey S, Papp E, Patel V , Patrick L,
Peddle C, Pinsky N, Poirier P, Powell C, Price J, Rolfe A, Saliba N, Sawkiw R, Senior R,
Shu D, Smith R, Somani R, Soowamber M, Stakiw K, Talbot P, Taliano J, Tan K,
Teitelbaum I, Threoux P, Tremblay G, Turcotte C, Tytus R, Walsh P, Webb G,
Willoughby P, Woo V, Woodland R, Yee G, Chile 83: Blanco M, Cardenas N,
Dominguez J, Gutierrez M, Jalaf M, Olivares P, Rodriguez B, Saelezer C, Stockins B,
Colombia 345: Ardila W, Aschner P, Botero J, Botero R, Calderon C, Casas L,
Castellanos R, Chaves A, Cure C, Escobar I, Fortich A, Garcia L, Hernandez E, Isaza D,
Jaramillo N, Kattah W, Marin M, Matiz C, Quintero A, Rizcala A, Rodriguez N, Ruiz A,
Urina M, Valenzuela A, Costa Rica 270: Cob-Sanchez A, Gutreiman-Golberg M,
Lainez-Ventosilla A, Ramirez-Zamoraa L, Slon-Hitti C, Vinocour-Fornieri M, Denmark
336: Hansen H, Nordestgaard B, Steffensen R, Stender S, El Salvador 162: Abrego H,
Renderos J, Rivera-Ochoa L, Estonia 85: Eha J, Jaanson E, Kaasik U, Keba E, Maetos E,
Petersen M, Reinmets S, Roostalu U, Vahula V, Veidrik K, Germany 222: Bellmann R,
Hanefeld M, Horacek T, Klein C, Knels R, Koenig W, Laus S, Meibner G, Mondorf C,
Schell E, Schuster H, Sehnert W, Stahl H, Szelazek G, Winkelmann B, Witczak E, Israel
143: Avishay E, Gavish A, Grossman E, Haratz D, Hussein O, Keider S, Levy Y, Shapiro
I, Shveydel E, Wolfovitz E, Yogev R, Zeltser D, Mexico 741: Escarcega J, Galvez G,
Gonzalez J, Guajardo S, Gutierrez-Fajardo P, Ibara M, Leon J, Lozano F, Munoz E, Pina
J, Romero-Zazueta A, Sanchez R, Takahashi H, Villalpando C, Villegas E, Netherlands
987: Agous I, Bak A, Bartels G, Basart D, Cornel J, De Schipper L, Holwerda N, Kose
V, Koster Y, Lok D, Lokhorst B, Mosterd A, Nierop P, Oude Ophuis A, Somer S, Tiebesl
J, Trip M, Van Hessen M, Van Kempen W, Wassenaar M, Norway 204: Andresen M,
Berz A, Bjurstrom M, Bo P, Brunstad O, Daae-Johansen T, Elle S, Fauske J, Fossdal B,
Gjefsen O, Hallaraker A, Haugen J, Helberg S, Holm-Johnsen S, Istad H, Jacobsen T,
Johansen R, Jorstad T, Jorum I, Kjorlaug K, Kontny F, Langaker K, Larsen B, Lonning
S, Loraas A, Mansilla-Tinoco R, Medhus R, Meyer I, Nasrala S, Ofjord E, Ose L, Palmas
J, Risberg K, Sandberg A, Sirnes P, Skjegstad E, Skjelvan G, Solnor L, Storm-Larsen A,
Tandberg A, Tomala T, Torkelsen A, Ursin A, Valnes K, Walaas K, Panama 202: Binns
R, Delgado A, Lombana B, Noriega L, Trujillo R, Poland 804: Artemiuk E, Asankowicz-
Bargiel B, Banas I, Baranska E, Baranski M, Bijata-Bronisz R, Sikorska A, Blasszczyk B,
Bolanowski J, Brokl-Stolarczyk B, Brzecki K, Buczkowski K, Chmielewski T, Chojnowska-
Jezierska J, Chwist-Nowak A, Cygan W, Czajkowska-Kaczmarek E, Dargiewicz A,
Dluzniewski M, Dudka C, Fares I, Flasinska J, Gadzinski W, Gaszczyk G, Golebiowski G,
Gozdur W, Grudzien K, Kalamarz J, Kalinowska A, Kornacewicz-Jach Z, Korol M,
Korycka W, Kostka T, Kostrzewska A, Kot A, Kowalczyk-Kram M, Kowalska-Werbowy B,
Krupinska G, Lotocka E, Luberda-Heynar Z, Lukas W, Lysek R, Machyna-Dybala A,
Mlynarczyk-Jeremicz K, Mocarska-Gorna B, Niedbal-Yahfouf I, Pasternak D, Potakowska I,
Ramian U, Roleder M, Rosinska-Migda J, Sidorowicz-Bialynicka A, Skierkowska J,
Skorinko I, Slaboszewska J, Sleziak-Barglik K, Sobieska E, Stachlewski P, Superson-Byra E,
Tissler-Nahorska G, Turbak R, Uzunow A, Wasowicz D, Wodniecki J, Wojnowski L,
Wrzol A, Zdrojewska J, Zurakowska-Krzywonos A, Zurowska-Gebala M, Romania 32:
Ablachim T, Abobului M, Bobescu E, Bojinca M, Cristea M, Gaita D, Stoicovici R, Tataru R,
Tudose A, Russia 273: Ardashev V, Arutyunov G, Azarin O, Barbarash O, Bondarev S,
Borisov M, Boyarkin M, Burova N, Chazova I, Dovgalevsky P, Duplyakov D, Egorova L,
Goloshchekin B, Gratsianskiy N, Ivleva A, Karpov R, Karpov Y, Khokhlov A, Khokhlov R,
Khrustalev O, Konyakhin A, Kostenko V, Libov I, Lukyanov Y, Mezentseva N, Panov A,
Repin M, Shabalin A, Shalaev S, Shilkina N, Shulman V, Sidorenko B, Smolenskaya O,
Starodubtsev A, Talibov O, Titkov Y, Tsyba L, Uspenskil Y, Vishnevsky A, Yarokhno N,
South Africa 2497: Ahmed S, Ashtiker H, Bester A, Bhorat Q, Biermann E, Boyd W, Burgess L,
Dindar F, Dulabh R, Engelbrecht I, Erasmus E, Fouche L, Furman S, Govind U, Herbst
L, Jacovides A, Kahanovitz C, Kruger C, Lakha D, Lombaard J, MacLeod A, Makan H,
Manuel E, McDonald M, Mitha E, Mitha I, Moola S, Nell H, Nieuwoudt G, Olivier P,
Padayachee T, Pillai P, Pillay S, Ranjith N, Reyneke S, Routier R, Sandell P, Sebastian P,
Skriker M, Smit J, van Rensburg D, van Zyl L, Vawda Z, Wellman H, Switzerland 15:
Stahl M, United Kindom 2873: Adbulhakim E, Angus M, Balmer F, Balmer J, Barrat R,
Blair D, Blyth A, Brodie R, Brydie D, Campbell C, Campbell I, Church M, Clark C,
Clements R, Donnachie H, Fitpatrick P, Godley C, Hill J, Jarvie F, Kieran W, Langridge S,
Leslie R, Liddell A, MacKenzie J, MacKintosh C, Mair R, Marshall G, Martin R,
McCann C, McKibbin C, McLachlan B, McLean F, Murray S, Norris A, Pawa R, Pexton
N, Ramage A, Reid S, Robertson A, Rourke E, Sarmiento R, Shaw H, Shaw R, Sheil L,
Spence G, Stewart E, Thomas H, Thomson J, Thomson W, Travers J, Ward R, Williams
L, Wooff D, Young W, Uruguay 14: Belzarena C, Huarte A, Kuster F, Lluberas R,
Speranza-Sanchez M, United States 4021: Abarikwu C, Abate L, Abbott R, Ackley C,
Adams G, Adkins S, Albakri E, Albarracin C, Allison J, Alvarado O, Alwine L, Amin K,
Amin M, Anderson J, Anderson M, Anderson W, Andrawis N, Andrews C, Angles L,
Aquino N, Ariani M, Armstrong C, Aronoff S, Arora N, Atri P, Baker J, Baker K, Balli
E, Banish D, Bardenheier J, Barnett G, Bartkowiak A, Basista M, Beliveau W, Bell G,
Benchimol G, Bennett B, Bennett N, Bermudez Y, Bernstein J, Berroya A, Bhargava M,
Biaggioni I, Bimson S, Bittar N, Bleser S, Blumberg M, Bobson C, Boeren J, Bogan R,
Boling E, Booras C, Borge A, Brady J, Brandon D, Bredlau C, Brideau D, Brobyn T,
Brodowski M, Broker R, Broussard C, Brown C, Browning D, Brusco O, Bryant J,
Buchanan P, Bueso G, Burgess G, Burke B, Buynak R, Byrd L, Camilo-Vazquez E,
Campbell J, Cannon L, Capo J, Carmouche D, Castaldo R, Castilleja J, Caudill T, Caulin-
Glaser T, Champlin J, Chardon-Feliciano D, Cheng T, Cherlin R, Cheung D, Chodock A,
Christensen J, Christian D, Christiansen L, Ciemiega R, Clark J, Coble S, Cohen K,
Colan D, Cole F, Cole R, Colleran K, Collins G, Conard S, Cook J, Cooperman M,
Cooze D, Copeland T, Corder C, Courtney D, Cox W, Crump W, Cruz L, Cuellar J,
Cunningham T, Daboul N, Dailey R, Dallas A, Dansinger M, Dao L, Darwin C, Dauber
I, Davidson M, Davis P, Degarmo R, Degoma R, Dempsey M, Denny D, Denyer G,
Desai V, Despot J, Dewan M, Dickert J, Diederich C, Doben S, Dobratz D, Douglas B,
Drehobl M, Dresner J, Dreyfus J, Drummond W, Dunbar W, Dunlap J, Dunmyer S,
Eaton C, Ecker A, Edris M, Egbujiobi L, Elkind A, Ellis J, Ellison H, Engeron E, Erdy G,
Ervin W, Eshowsky S, Estock D, Fang C, Fanning J, Feinberg B, Feld L, Fenton I,
Fernandez E, Ferrera R, Fiacco P, Fierer R, Finneran M, Fintel D, Fischer M, Flippo G,
Flores A, Folkerth S, Forbes R, Fowler R, Francis P, Franco M, Frank A, Fraser N,
Fuchs R, Gabriel J, Gaddam S, Gaffney M, Gamponia M, Gandhi D, Ganzman H, Gaona
R, Gaona R Jr, Garibian G, Garofalo J,, Gatewood R, Gazda S, Geiger R, Geller M,
Germino W, Gibbs R, Gifford C, Gilhooley N, Gill S, Gillespie E, Godwin D, Goldberg
M, Goldberg R, Goldstein M, Gonzalez-Ortiz E, Goodman D, Gordon G, Gordon M,
Goswami A, Gottlieb D, Gottschlich G, Graham D, Gray J, Gray W, Green S, Greenberg
R, Greenspan M, Greenwald M, Grover D, Gupta, R, Gupta-Bala S, Guthrie R, Gutmann
J, Gvora T, Habib G, Hack T, Haidar A, Hamdy O, Hansen M, Hanshaw C, Hargrove J,
Harris H, Harris H, Harrison B, Hart T, Heacock J, Head D, Headley D, Henderson D,
Herman L, Herrera C, Hershberger V, Hershon K, Heym H, Hill G, Hippert R, Hirsch A,
Hnatiuk G, Hoekstra J, Holt W, Homan J, Honsinger R, Howard J, Howard V, Howard
W, Huling R, Imburgia M, Isajiw G, Ison R, Iverson W, Jacks R, Jackson B, Jackson K,
Jacobs J, Jacobson E, James A, Jayanty V, Johary A, Johnson G, Jones P, Jones T, Joseph
J, Julien C, Kahn Z, Kalvaria I, Kang J, Kaplan I, Karns R, Kashi K, Kaster S, Kaufman
A, Kawley F, Keller R, Kenton D, Kerlin J, Kern J, Kerwin E, Kerzner B, Ketchum J,
Khan J, Khan S, Khawar M, Khera A, Kinstrey T, Klein B, Klein E, Klein S, Klein T,
Kleinsteuber K, Klementowicz P, Knopp R, Knutson T, Koch S, Kramer M, Krause R,
Krisciunas V, Krueger C, Kruszewski D, Kumar R, Kunst E, Kuo D, Kuritsky L,
Kushner P, Kutner M, Kwiterovich P, Kwong S, Lanese J, Lang B, Lary J, Lasalle J,
Lasater S, Lasser N, Laughlin D, Lawless J, Lawlor D, Ledbetter J, Ledesma G, Lee D,
Lemanski P, Levinson G, Levinson L, Lewis D, Lewis L, Lewis S, Linden D, Loh I,
Look M, Lopez D, Loskovitz L, Lubin B, Lucas M, MacAdams M, Madden B, Magee P,
Maggiacomo F, Magier D, Magnuson S, Mahaffey R, Makowski D, Maletz L, Mally A,
Maloney R, Mancha V, Manolukas P, Marple R, Martin R, Masri A, Masri B, Mattingly
G, Mayer N, McCain A, McCall Bundy J, Mccartney M, Mcclain D, McConn M,
Mccullum K, Mcdavid R, Mcgettigan J, McIvor M, Mcneff J, Mendolla M, Mercado A,
Mersey J, Milam J, Milko T, Miller M, Miller R, Miller S, Mobley D, Modi T, Modiano
M, Mollen M, Montgomery R, Moran J, Morelli J, Morin D, Moskow H, Moursi M,
Mueller N, Mullins M, Myers E, Nadar V, Naiser J, Nash S, Natarajan S, Neft M,
Neuman D, Nevins B, Newman J, Newman R, Newman S, Nolen T, Nwasuruba C,
Oberoi M, Odom A, Ong Y, Oppy J, Owen S, Pampe E, Pangtay D, Parker R, Patel B,
Patel J, Patel M, Patel R, Paul A, Pearlstein R, Penepent P, Peniston J, Perlman M,
Persson D, Peters P, Peterson G, Peterson J, Pettyjohn F, Phillips A, Phillips D, Piel M,
Pillai T, Pi-Sunyer F, Pollack A, Pond M, Pongonis J, Porras C, Portnoy E, Potos W,
Powers J, Prasad J, Pritchett K, Pudi K, Pullman J, Purdy A, Quinones Y, Raad G,
Radbill M, Radin D, Rai K, Raikhel M, Raine C, Ramanujan R, Ramirez G, Ramos-
Santana Z, Rapo S, Ravin S, Rawtani P, Reeves R, Reeves W, Reiter W, Rendell M,
Resnick H, Reynolds W, Rhudy J, Rice L, Rictor K, Ringrose R, Riser J, Rizvi M, Rizzo
W, Robinson J, Robison W, Rogers W, Rohlf J, Rosen R, Ross, E, Roth E, Rovner S,
Rucki P, Runde M, Ryan W, Rybicki J, Saleem T, Salvato P, Santram D, Scharf B,
Schear M, Schectman G, Schmidt J, Schneider A, Schneider P, Schneider R,
Schoenfelder S, Schussheim A, Schwartz R, Schwartz S, Schwarze M, Scott C, Segal S,
Settipane R, Shah M, Shamim T, Shanes J, Shapero P, Shapiro J, Shealy N, Shepard M,
Shepherd A, Sheta M, Shrivastava R, Shusman R, Siddiqi M, Sidney A, Silvers D,
Simek C, Simpson C, Sinatra L, Singh S, Singson D, Slabic S, Smith D, Smith K, Smith
S, Smith T, Snell P, Specter J, Speer J, Spees R, Sperling M, Spuhler W, Staab P,
Stafford J, Stanton D, Stein E, Stern S, Stocks T, Stone A, Strader W, Strout C, Strzinek
R, Subich D, Suen J, Sugimoto D, Sulman S, Suresh D, Sweeney G, Szatkowski A, Szeto
J, Szewczak S, Szulawski I, Taber L, Taghizadeh B, Tague R, Tambunan D, Tannoury G,
Tavarez Valle J, Thieneman A, Thigpen D, Thompson P, Tidman R, Tilton G, Tokatlian
E, Topkis R, Torelli M, Tortorice F, Toth P, Touger M, Treat S, Trevino M, Trupin S,
Turner A, Turner M, Tweel C, Ugarte J, Ulmer E, Urbach D, Vacker M, Vallecillo J, van
de Beek M, Vargas L, Vazquez Tanus J, Verma, A, Vijayaraghavan K, Wade P, Wade T,
Wagner S, Wahle J, Walker J, Walker M, Weinstein R, Weisbrot A, Weiss R, West P,
White A, Wickemeyer W, Wieskopf B, Wiggins M, Williams H, Wilson M, Wiseman J,
Yataco A, Yates S, Zamarra J, Zamora B, Zawada E, Zemel L, Zigrang W, Zusman R,
Venezuela 209: Aguiton M, Arroyo-Parejo M, Beaujon Sierralta J, Carrizales de Marlin
Y, Colan Parraga J, Fernandez C, Fuenmayor N, Giesen G, Gonzalez Gomez C, Guaipo
A, Herrera Rivera C, Lopez de Montoreano N, Lopez Nouel R, Marturet L, Marulanda
M, Mata L, Morr I, Nass A, Palmucci G, Ponte C, Rivas I, de Roa E, Figarella Salazar G,
Sanchez F, Sirit U, Viloria A.

Posted in atherosclerosis, cardiology, cholesterol, coronary artery disease, diabetes, diabetes, Type 2, diet, drugs, junk food, obesity, professionalism, statins | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Obesity weighs on legal minds

Posted by Colin Rose on November 23, 2008

Disney World

Does she have a congenital or accidental disability?

Obesity is caused by addiction to junk food. Obesity is no more a disability that alcoholism. Would we acquit a drunk driver of causing a fatal accident because s/he had the disability of alcoholism?


Obesity weighs on legal minds SHARON KIRKEY CANWEST NEWS SERVICE The Gazette 23 Nov 2008 Peter Mathisen told his murder trial he couldn’t remember exactly what happened between the time he fell on his wife and the time he got off her, when he realized she was no longer moving. His appeal lawyer is launching an accident defense, citing…read more…

Posted in addiction, death, diet, junk food, law, moral relativism, obesity | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

JUPITER is a gas giant

Posted by Colin Rose on November 21, 2008

An excellent article by André Picard in today’s Globe and Mail, the only story on JUPITER I have seen in the lay press that reveals the massive fraud behind the reporting of this “study”.

JUPITER is aptly named. It’s gigantic. Probably the largest, most expensive drug trial in history. When one looks below the surface of the publication in the NEJM, the results are about as exciting as the Jovian composition. A lot of gas. I would conservatively estimate that this “study” cost at least $500 million. But if you are AstraZeneca and stand to sell $many billions worth of Crestor because of this paper that’s small change. And junk food addicts, who comprise most of the subjects of JUPITER have one more excuse, however deceptive, to continue their self-destructive habits.

Here is my opinion posted in the NEJM blog on the paper.

nyt-jupiter-unethical

A more detailed analysis of the marketing driven deception and lack of professionalism in the paper by Sandy Szwarc.

Another perspective by John McDougall similar to mine on the big lie behind the claim that many “healthy” people need Crestor..

When all of these criticisms are considered it turns out that JUPITER is nothing more than a thinly disguised  infomercial for Crestor and should never have been published in a presumably high quality journal like the NEJM. But in being able to make this paper freely available on the web (and not wait 6 months like other papers) the NEJM must have received a large payment from AstraZeneca.

Non-blinded statin trials like JUPITER, have the potential for bias in subjective outcomes like the decision to do an angioplasty or coronary bypass, outcomes that constitute the vast majority of the combined endpoint. Also, it is quite likely that when the JUPITER subjects knew that their blood LDL was low because they were taking Crestor they had less incentive to change self-destructive lifestyles. That is probably why the group treated with Crestor had significantly more diabetes. In light of the JUPITER trial the Therapeutics Initiatives group at the University of British Columbia has updated their recommendations for use of statins in primary prevention, which would include people like those entered into the JUPITER trial, and concluded that “statins do not have a proven net health benefit in primary prevention populations and thus when used in that setting do not represent good use of scarce health care resources.

See a slide show on JUPITER and “dyslipidemia”.

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Lead “investigators” of JUPITER

Paul M Ridker, M.D., Eleanor Danielson, M.I.A., Francisco A.H. Fonseca, M.D., Jacques Genest, M.D., Antonio M. Gotto, Jr., M.D., John J.P. Kastelein, M.D., Wolfgang Koenig, M.D., Peter Libby, M.D., Alberto J. Lorenzatti, M.D., Jean G. MacFadyen, B.A., Børge G. Nordestgaard, M.D., James Shepherd, M.D., James T. Willerson, M.D., Robert J. Glynn, Sc.D., for the JUPITER Study Group

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Dominican Republic

What typical JUPITER subjects would look like. These are "apparently healthy" people? Is it not unethical to prescribe drugs to these people to "treat" the symptoms of their self-destructive lifestyles?

Nowhere in the JUPITER paper will you see it mentioned that CRP can be markedly reduced with cost-free lifestyle change alone, no statins, as shown in this paper in the Journal of Applied Physiology in 2006, results of which are summarized below. The subjects in the JAP paper were just the same as in the JUPITER study, obese people, many with metabolic syndrome but the authors did not call them “apparently healthy”. They had nothing to sell.

jap-diet-crp

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When it comes to statins, don’t believe the hype

November 20, 2008
The Globe and Mail
André Picard”Cholesterol drug causes risk of heart attack to plummet” – Fox News.

“Cholesterol-fighting drugs show wider benefit” – The New York Times.

“Cholesterol drug cuts heart risk in healthy patients” – The Wall Street Journal.

The New York Times article summarized the exciting news in a front-page story saying that “millions more people could benefit from taking the cholesterol-lowering drugs known as statins.”

That’s big medical/business news, because statins are already the bestselling drugs in the world, with sales in excess of $20-billion (U.S.).

Quoting some of the world’s top heart researchers, media reports touted the importance of a blood test for C-reactive protein. That’s because those benefiting from statins had high levels of CRP (a marker for inflammation) rather than high levels of LDL cholesterol, which is usually the criterion for statin prescription.

The news stories were based on research published last week in the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine and presented, with much fanfare, at the annual convention of the American Heart Association.

Like much reporting on medical research (and drug research in particular), however, there is more (or, more accurately, less) to these stories than meets the eye.

The principal finding in this study was that participants who took a statin pill recorded a 50-per-cent reduction in the risk of heart attack, stroke, surgery and death compared with those who took a placebo (a sugar pill).

Who wouldn’t be wowed by those numbers? Who wouldn’t want that miracle drug?

But the benefits are relative risk reductions.

When you look at the raw data in the study, they reveal that 0.9 per cent of statin users had cardiovascular problems. By comparison, 1.8 per cent of those taking a placebo had heart problems.

There were 17,802 participants in the study, yet there were only 83 cardiac events among statin users, compared with 157 in the placebo group. That’s 50 per cent fewer.

Are those really “dramatic” findings? Do statins really make heart attack risk “plummet”?

According to a cautionary editorial in the New England Journal of Medicine (which received virtually no mention in news reports), 120 people in this study needed to be treated with a statin for two years to see a benefit in one person.

That’s a lot of people taking a pricey drug ($3 Canadian a day) for no benefit – not to mention that there are risks.

While researchers (and journalists who report on studies) love to highlight benefits of drugs, they too often gloss over risks.

Like all drugs, statins have side effects. The drug used in the study, rosuvastatin (brand name Crestor), has been associated with muscle deterioration and kidney problems.

In the study, those taking statins had a higher risk of developing Type 2 diabetes – 3 per cent compared with 2.4 per cent of those taking a placebo. That’s a 25 per cent higher relative risk among people with very little heart disease to begin with.

As noted earlier, researchers (and news stories) suggested that, based on the findings, the number of patients taking statins could and should expand dramatically.

But is that really what the research tells us, even in its most optimistic interpretation?

The study involved exclusively men older than 50 and women older than 60 who did not have high cholesterol or histories of heart disease or inflammatory illness. All the people in the study needed to have low cholesterol and high CRP.

Initially, researchers recruited 90,000 people in those age groups, but more than 80 per cent of them were deemed ineligible. This is a very select population.

To say, by extrapolation, that these “dramatic” (read: modest) benefits apply to the general population is erroneous.

Similarly, while it is true that about half of all heart attacks and strokes occur in people whose cholesterol is not considered high, does that mean everyone should get a blood test to measure levels of C-reactive protein? Hardly.

Yes, there is more heart disease among people with high levels of CRP, but the jury is still out on what this means.

Some scientists believe that because CRP – secreted in response to inflammation – is present in plaque, it increases the risk that the plaque will burst, leading to blood clots that cause heart attacks. But other researchers think that CRP levels are, at best, a telltale sign of heart disease, a bit like grey hairs are a sign of aging – not its cause.

The CRP test is expensive at almost $50. And it’s worth noting that one of the principal authors of the new research holds the patent on the test and makes money every time it is used.

When you cut through all the hype and the self-interest, what we know is this: Statins reduce levels of [LDL] cholesterol. This is beneficial to people who have had a heart attack or other serious heart problems.

But for otherwise healthy people, high CRP levels or not, the potential benefits of taking statins are marginal, and the risks are not insignificant.

Hardly the stuff of dramatic newspaper headlines.

Posted in atherosclerosis, cardiology, cholesterol, coronary artery disease, death, diabetes, diabetes, Type 2, drugs, junk food, obesity, professionalism, statins, waist circumference | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Beware the campus thought police

Posted by Colin Rose on November 20, 2008

Where were the Queen’s “facilitators” during the riots at Homecoming? Or did they think that drinking yourself into a coma and trashing property was OK because it was “inclusive”. We are now witnessing the consequences on a small scale of academic liberalism’s fear of censuring any behaviour that is not overtly “racist” or “sexist”. It’s easier to shut down a treasured tradition than censure alcoholism and evil behaviour. One can only hope we won’t have to shut down our whole society because of the liberals’ unwillingness to criticize and punish addictive and self-destructive habits.

“Cowardice shuts the eyes till the sky is not larger than a calf-skin: shuts the eyes so that we cannot see the horse that is running away with us; worse, shuts the eyes of the mind and chills the heart.”
–Ralph Waldo Emerson

“To sin by silence when they should protest makes cowards of men”
— Abraham Lincoln


Beware the campus thought police

National Post
20 Nov 2008

Just who is Queen’s University trying to kid? The school may call its new political-correctness cops “facilitators.” It may insist they will not be eavesdropping on private conservations, “preaching” to students they overhear using “offending terms,”…read more…

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Disaster! Americans stop taking Lipitor.

Posted by Colin Rose on November 19, 2008

Well, I predicted many years ago that the exorbitant cost of drugs for lifestyle diseases would at some point destroy the cherished American ideal of unlimited consumption. It has happened a lot sooner than even I thought. The same attitude that powered the myth of free money and endless consumption of houses and goods is responsible for the myth of harmless gluttony while taking pills for “cholesterol”, hypertension and Type 2 diabetes, all, to a large extent, diseases of lifestyle.  Most of these drugs have never been shown to prolong life in the general population and should never have been prescribed in the first place. The same thing happens in Canada. I just saw a patient with normal blood sugar and normal “cholesterol” who was prescribed metformin and Lipitor “just in case”.

The profligate American lifestyle is undergoing a profound change. In the financial crunch It has finally dawned on a lot of people that they really don’t need those “cholesterol” pills, that they might be much better off if they just changed some of their greedy habits. In most cases it is not a choice between “meals and medication”. Less meals = less medication. Most Americans are eating far too much anyway.

Two-thirds of the US population is now overweight or obese, all “high risk” people on multiple drugs for treating the symptoms of inflammatory excess visceral fat. I predict we will witness a stabilization of amelioration of the pandemic of obesity and a marked drop in the costs of treating it’s complications, now about $75 billion per year in the US. It will be discovered anew that obesity is not genetic and one really doesn’t need a “gastric bypass” to lose weight. All you have to do is eat less.

You read it here first. Nothing like a financial collapse to cure gluttony.

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From the New York Times

nyt-drugs-financialcrisis

By STEPHANIE SAUL
Published: October 21, 2008

For the first time in at least a decade, the nation’s consumers are trying to get by on fewer prescription drugs.

As people around the country respond to financial and economic hard times by juggling the cost of necessities like groceries and housing, drugs are sometimes having to wait.

“People are having to choose between gas, meals and medication,” said Dr. James King, the chairman of the American Academy of Family Physicians, a national professional group. He also runs his own family practice in rural Selmer, Tenn.

“I’ve seen patients today who said they stopped taking their Lipitor, their cholesterol-lowering medicine, because they can’t afford it,” Dr. King said one recent morning.

“I have patients who have stopped taking their osteoporosis medication.”

On Tuesday, the drug giant Pfizer, which makes Lipitor, the world’s top-selling prescription medicine, said United States sales of that drug were down 13 percent in the third quarter of this year.

Through August of this year, the number of all prescriptions dispensed in the United States was lower than in the first eight months of last year, according to a recent analysis of data from IMS Health, a research firm that tracks prescriptions.

Although other forces are also in play, like safety concerns over some previously popular drugs and the transition of some prescription medications to over-the-counter sales, many doctors and other experts say consumer belt-tightening is a big factor in the prescription downturn.

The trend, if it continues, could have potentially profound implications.

If enough people try to save money by forgoing drugs, controllable conditions could escalate into major medical problems. That could eventually raise the nation’s total health care bill and lower the nation’s standard of living.

Martin Schwarzenberger, a 56-year-old accounting manager for the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Kansas City, is stretching out his prescriptions. Mr. Schwarzenberger, who has Type 1 diabetes, is not cutting his insulin, but has started scrimping on a variety of other medications he takes, including Lipitor.

“Don’t tell my wife, but if I have 30 days’ worth of pills, I’ll usually stretch those out to 35 or 40 days,” he said. “You’re trying to keep a house over your head and use your money to pay all your bills.”

Although the overall decline in prescriptions in the IMS Health data was less than 1 percent, it was the first downturn after more than a decade of steady increases in prescriptions, as new drugs came on the market and the population aged.

From 1997 to 2007, the number of prescriptions filled had increased 72 percent, to 3.8 billion last year. In the same period, the average number of prescriptions filled by each person in this country increased from 8.9 a year in 1997 to 12.6 in 2007.

Dr. Timothy Anderson, a Sanford C. Bernstein & Company pharmaceutical analyst who analyzed the IMS data and first reported the prescription downturn last week, said the declining volume was “most likely tied to a worsening economic environment.”

In some cases, the cutbacks might not hurt, according to Gerard F. Anderson, a health policy expert at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. “A lot of people think there there’s probably over-prescribing in the United States,” Mr. Anderson said.

But for other patients, he said, “the prescription drug is a lifesaver, and they really can’t afford to stop it.”

Dr. Thomas J. Weida, a family physician in Hershey, Pa., said one of his patients ended up in the hospital because he was unable to afford insulin.

Not everyone simply stops taking their drugs.

“They’ll split pills, take their pills every other day, do a lot of things without conferring with their doctors,” said Jack Hoadley, a health policy analyst at Georgetown University.

“We’ve had focus groups with various populations,” Mr. Hoadley said. “They’ll look at four or five prescriptions and say, ‘This is the one I can do without.’ They’re not going to stop their pain medication because they’ll feel bad if they don’t take that. They’ll stop their statin for cholesterol because they don’t feel any different whether they take that or not.”

Overall spending in the United States for prescription drugs is still the highest in the world, an estimated $286.5 billion last year. But that number makes up only about 10 percent of this country’s total health expenditures of $2.26 trillion.

Pharmaceutical companies have long been among those arguing that drugs are a cost-effective way to stave off other, higher medical costs.

The recent prescription cutbacks come even as the drug industry was already heading toward the “generic cliff,” as it is known — an approaching period when a number of blockbuster drugs are scheduled to lose patent protection. That will be 2011 for Lipitor.

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Already, a migration to generic drugs means that 60 percent of prescriptions over all are filled by off-brand versions of drugs. But with money tight, even cheaper generic drugs may not always be affordable drugs.

Factors other than the economy that may also be at play in the prescription downturn include adverse publicity about some big-selling medications — like the cholesterol medications Zetia and Vytorin, marketed jointly by Merck and Schering-Plough. And sales of Zyrtec, a popular allergy medication, moved out of the prescription category earlier this year when Johnson & Johnson began selling it as an over-the-counter medication.

Diane M. Conmy, the director of market insights for IMS Health, said the drop in prescriptions might also be partly related to the higher out-of-pocket drug co-payments that insurers are asking consumers to pay.

“Some consumers are making decisions based on the fact that they are bearing more of the cost of medicines than they have in the past,” Ms. Conmy said.

The average co-payment for drugs on insurers’ “preferred” lists rose to $25 in 2007, from $15 in 2000, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonprofit health care research organization. And, of course, lots of people have no drug insurance at all. That includes the estimated 47 million people in the United States with no form of health coverage, but it is also true for some people who have medical insurance that does not include drug coverage — a number for which no good data may exist.

For older Americans, the addition of Medicare drug coverage in 2006 through the Part D program has meant that 90 percent of Medicare-age people now have drug insurance. And in the early going, Part D had helped stimulate growth in the nation’s overall number of prescriptions, as patients who previously had no coverage flocked to Part D.

But a potential coverage gap in each recipient’s benefit each year — the so-called Part D doughnut hole — means that many Medicare patients are without coverage for part of the year.

The recent IMS Health figures reveal that prescription volume declined in June, in July and again in August, mirroring studies from last year suggesting that prescription use begins dropping at about the time more Medicare beneficiaries begin entering the doughnut hole.

Under this year’s rules, the doughnut hole opens when a patient’s total drug costs have reached $2,510, which counts the portion paid by Medicare as well as the patient’s own out-of-pocket deductibles and co-payments.

The beneficiary must then absorb 100 percent of the costs for the next $3,216, until total drug costs for the year have reached $5,726, when Medicare coverage resumes.

Gloria Wofford, 76, of Pittsburgh, said she recently stopped taking Provigil, prescribed for her problem of falling asleep during the day, because she could no longer afford it after she entered the Medicare doughnut hole.

Her Provigil had been costing $1,695 every three months. “I have no idea who could do it,” she said. “There’s no way I could handle that.”

Without the medication, Ms. Wofford said, she falls asleep while sitting at her computer during the day but then cannot sleep during the night. Because she feels she has no choice, Ms. Wofford is paying out of pocket to continue taking an expensive diabetes medication that costs more than $500 every three months.

For some other people, the boundaries of when and where to cut back are less distinct.

Lori Stewart of Champaign, Ill., is trying to decide whether to discontinue her mother’s Alzheimer’s medications, which seem to have only marginal benefit.

“The medication is $182 a month,” said Ms. Stewart, who recently wrote about the dilemma on her personal blog.

“It’s been a very agonizing decision for me. It is literally one-fifth of her income.”

Posted in addiction, cholesterol, diabetes, Type 2, diet, drugs, junk food, obesity, statins | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Large Waists Kill

Posted by Colin Rose on November 19, 2008

Visceral ectopic fat is a major risk factor for many chronic diseases and death. Everyone should have a waist circumference at the level of the umbilicus less than half their heights. If everyone did so, we could cut the cost of our “health care” systems by at least 50% in a very short time.

http://content.nejm.org/cgi/content/full/359/20/2105

nejm-epic-waist-abs

nejm-epic-waistcircumference2

Relative risk of death increases by a factor or four from lowest to highest values in this population.

 

Multiple beneficial results of losing visceral fat

 

 

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Obese people have obese pets

Posted by Colin Rose on November 18, 2008

The apologists for the obese say that obesity is, like homosexuality, genetic, there is a “set point” for weight, there is no point in trying to change behavior, everyone should be happy at whatever weight they have, etc.

Then how do they explain the obesity pandemic in pets which has tracked the pandemic in humans? Pets get most of their food from humans. Cats never got obese chasing and gnawing on birds, mice and rats or eating low fat, low sugar cat food. Recently many have been fed the same junk as their obese owners. Tinks was a stray cat that was fed by a variety of people in four different neighborhoods. Two-thirds of the UK population is overweight or obese.

So we conclude that both the human and the pet pandemics of obesity are caused by the same thing, a pandemic of junk food addiction.

gm-pets-obesity-england

From the Globe and Mail, Nov 18, 2008

bbc-obesity-uk

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Doctors bribed to read online drug propaganda

Posted by Colin Rose on November 18, 2008

It seems not enough doctors are reading the thinly disguised drug propaganda known as free online CME or “needs assessment”. The drug dealers are now offering bribes in the form of Aeroplan miles to to read this stuff.

advancing-aeroplan-bribe

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“Health” spending in Canada hits $172-billion, outpacing inflation

Posted by Colin Rose on November 14, 2008

Drugs now cost more than doctors and the cost is rising faster than inflation. Sooner or later this insanity has to end. Probably sooner. With a likely world-wide depression in the next few years there will be awakening awareness that most of those expensive branded drugs, such as Lipitor and Crestor, are for lifestyle diseases, like Type 2 diabetes, hypertension and atherosclerosis, related to junk food addiction which can be prevented and treated without drugs. But we need to take a $few billion of that $172 billion and put it into addiction research. Addictions of many kinds are at the root of most of the problems of developed capitalist democracies.

Note that Japan which spends per capita on its “health care” system only 38% of the USA and 70% of Canada has a longer life expectancy than either. Ergo, there is no relation between money spent on hospitals, drugs and doctors and life expectancy; if any, there is an inverse correlation. While everyone uses the term “health care” for the activities and effects of hospitals, drugs and doctors, these are really disease care. Some diseases can be cured but most can’t and in a high tech, fee-for-service medical system with an incentive only to do more, more people will be killed by the technology than saved by it.

Jeffrey Simpson in the Globe and Mail suggests as a solution to exponentially increasing costs more private “health” care. That will only increase the total cost as people with just spend more to support their addictions. Doctors in a fee-for-service regime will be only to happy to oblige. The only long-term solution I can see is to put all doctors on a salary. In such a system the driving incentive is to keep people healthy so doctors have less work to do. Paying doctors per disease is like paying firemen per fire. Would there be more or less fires? Would there be any incentive for fire departments to promote fire prevention? In a regime of totally salaried doctors costs would drop dramatically and the health of the population would markedly improve.


Health spending hits $172-billion, outpacing inflation
BY BRADLEY BOUZANE Canwest News Service
National Post
14 Nov 2008

OTTAWA  Health care in Canada will cost $172-billion this year, or nearly $5,200 for every person in the country, according to figures released yesterday by the Canadian Institute for Health Information. The independent statistical agency says that…read more…

cihi-canada-world-healthcare-cost
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From the Globe and Mail, November 19, 2009

Listening to the sounds of health-care silence

JEFFREY SIMPSON

Where did health care go? Pollsters keep reporting that health care is the No. 1 issue for Canadians. We spend way more on it than on anything else. Yet, no one – well, almost no one – talks about it any more, at least not politically.
Sure, citizens recount their experiences with the system to each other. People who work in the system talk about it incessantly, health care being their world.
But as a public policy/political issue, health care has died. Died, despite the Canadian Institute for Health Information’s reporting last week that Canada will spend $172-billion this year on health, about 70 per cent from public sources. That works out to $5,170 per capita.
Health care gobbles up provincial (and federal) resources. It consumes 39 per cent of all provincial program expenditures – that is, spending on everything but  servicing the debt. In some provinces, health care’s share of program expenditures is 45 per cent. Soon, it will be 50 per cent and higher in all of them.
Health care consumed 7 per cent of the nation’s economic output in the mid-1970s, shortly after it was up and running. Now, it consumes 10.7 per cent. That share will keep on rising as the population ages, technology becomes more expensive, and demand grows.
No one knows how to stop the increase; in fact, large increases are hardwired into government spending plans. These increases are not improving the system, but they are keeping it from getting discernibly worse.
The Paul Martin government signed a deal with the provinces for a $41-billion transfer from Ottawa over 10 years starting in 2004-2005, with the transfer indexed yearly to 6 per cent. The Harper Conservatives, then in opposition, signed on to that deal and have never wavered.
Without that federal cash, provincial health-care plans would be struggling or imploding – or provinces would be forced to raise taxes or cut other services. As it is, their annual costs are rising by 4 per cent to 5 per cent after inflation. The federal cash keeps their systems afloat.
That’s one reason why silence surrounds the health-care debate. Caterwauling provinces can hardly complain about parsimonious Ottawa when such mighty rivers of federal cash are flowing their way. Similarly, almost complete silence reigns within federal politics, except for occasional election promises to spend  yet more money for provinces to hire more doctors. But with Ottawa already sending so much money to provincial capitals, these chirpings ring hollow.
It was cheap theatre for provinces to beat up on Ottawa when the federal government seemed to be rolling in dough. But after the Harper government spent the surplus it inherited by shovelling money to the provinces for the ‘fiscal imbalance,’ cut federal revenues through reductions to the GST and let spending proceed above the inflation rate, the surplus almost disappeared.
Now, with the economic tsunami upon us, the small surplus will head into deficit. Even if provinces clamoured for more health-care money, there wouldn’t be any.
The deeper reason for the silence is that no provincial government knows what to do about the system, except to keep it going, fiddle at the edges, try to improve administration here and there, negotiate the best collective bargaining agreements they can.
Nowhere in Canadian public affairs is the gap so wide between what those responsible for policy say and what they do. Privately, almost all of those responsible know that the spending increases are unsustainable and that some means must be found to allow more public services to be delivered privately.
Publicly, none of them dare say so.
Without that debate – and fear of public reaction keeps it closed – politicians spin their wheels, spend lots of money, patch the system, add something new here and there, and carry on.
The only idea for lowering the increase in health-care costs comes from those who claim, rightly, that the fastest-rising part of health-care budgets is the drug bill. Their answer: a national pharmaceutical plan integrated into medicare.
It might be recalled that, in 1997, Quebec introduced such a drug plan. It cost the treasury about $700-million that year. This year, the public cost will be $2.3-billion, a threefold increase in about a decade.

Posted in atherosclerosis, diabetes, diet, drugs, statins | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »