The costs of many generic drugs have skyrocketed. In some cases, the price of a single pill has increased over 500 percent. But help may be on the way. Recently several large and respected non-profit hospital systems indicated that they will "fire a shot across the bow" of the generic drug business. That would be a game-changer. Why has the price of generics skyrocketed? Some large drug companies have purchased ...

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Meet Johnathan, a 34-year-old male from rural Georgia we recently treated for back pain as a result of some extra contractor work he took on over the holidays.  We see patients like him every 11 minutes, which doesn’t leave much time to get beyond Johnathan’s chief complaint.  He leaves with his first prescription for opioids. *** Of the 91 Americans taken each day, Georgia now claims
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As the health care debate drags on, prescription drug costs continue to rise by almost 10 percent annually. It is the rare patient who is spared this expense. Over the years, I have seen how these costs have affected my patients. At first, most patients had little in the way of co-pays. However, once the local economy deteriorated, co-pays skyrocketed as employers tried to curb their health ...

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“I made myself a hypodermic injection of a triple dose of morphia and sank down on the couch in my consulting room ... I told her I was all right, all I wanted was twenty-four hours’ sleep, she was not to disturb me unless the house was on fire.” – Axel Munthe, MD, The Story of San Michele (1929) When people in this country mention the opioid epidemic, most of the time it is ...

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Part of a series. A pill to end aging. Is there or could there be such a pill? Some researchers think so. Many believe that rather than attack the causes and treatment of chronic illnesses one by one, it would be better to understand the biology of aging and from that learn how to slow the process and hence prevent or delay the onset of various ...

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The New York Times reported that drug companies, insurers and pharmacies may “team up” to create effective monopolies. Company executives argue that this would be better for patients and would improve care and outcomes — however, nothing could be further than the truth. These conglomerates would further limit access and drive up costs. Many patients and physicians have found frustration when attempting to prescribe a particular medication ...

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STAT_Logo At his recent confirmation hearing, Alex Azar, President Trump’s nominee for secretary of Health and Human Services, was grilled by senators who wanted to know where he stands on requiring employers to provide oral contraception coverage in their employee health plans — even if employers object on religious or moral grounds. While avoiding specifics, Azar ...

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How excited would you be about a medication that lowered your risk of cardiovascular death, heart attack or stroke by 1.5%? Excited enough to spend a few thousand dollars a year on the drug? I expect not. What if, instead, the drug reduced those same terrible outcomes by 20%? That’s probably enough benefit to interest some in the drug. Well, those statistics come from the same clinical trial, evaluating the same drug. ...

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Many physicians in different fields have voiced criticisms against direct-to-consumer (DTC) prescription drug ads. First, a 2013 survey found that 74 percent of physicians believe DTC drug ads overemphasize the benefits of the drugs and misinform patients. Steven Nissen, a Cleveland Clinic cardiologist, interviewed by Rebecca Ruiz on DTC prescription drug ads states, “It’s almost impossible for the public to actually ...

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I remember just moving to Atlanta and having breakfast with a new-found friend I had met while working at a hospital as a registered nurse. The food at our chosen eatery was far from great. But I must say, my friend’s enthusiasm for life, specifically living in Atlanta, was fulfilling enough to make me forget the chef's lackluster culinary skills. She was warm, outgoing, adventurous, somewhat inquisitive — just what ...

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