Is Big Pharma evil ?

When I first joined my studies for becoming a pharmacist, I had it in my mind to become a clinical pharmacist and have a more direct approach to the patients. As I completed my studies, I developed more interest into joining a company and knowing more about post approval changes or pre-clinical development projects. I got the opportunity in working in a well-established company which has core values based on integrity, honesty and respect for one another, which has a belief of an egalitarian society culture.

Around 40,000+ employees around the world and it remains the same throughout no matter which country it is. It has been constantly rated as one of the best biopharmaceutical company to work for and has even come under fortune 500 list. So why the notion of big pharma being evil is is still prevalent?

The answer to this is simply not straight forward. I have been working in Regulatory Affairs for almost 2.2 years now, and I can say I have seen dedicated people working day and night to complete the tasks like nothing I had seen before. I am still no match to them in regards to their hard work and determination.

At the same time , many group of people or organisations believe that pharmaceuticals at the end of the day have to make money and that to generate enough money it has to make profits, in order to get the return of investments. So where will all the profits come from? From the prices set for the drugs !!!

It is not that simple, in fact many companies try to sell the drugs at a lesser price so that the patients can afford it. Newer drugs are weighed against other drugs and how unique they are in order to make an impact to the patient’s lives

A drug goes through five phases of development and it’s a long a costly and time consuming affair that looks really simple when presented via a graphics but in reality the employees who work for it get to know how difficult it is.

This process chart is simplified a lot to show the process of drug approval. In a thousand molecule discovered, only one molecule might make it to get approved and even that might not work or show adverse events later on due to which the drug might have to be recalled.

To say that a pharma company is evil is not entirely right, but yes there can be incidences where one corporation has misused some cases to cover up some facts in order to promote it’s drug or it’s entirely possible that in their eyes breaking certain rules for the greater good or so if they claim, it might be entirely right.

The core concept of providing benefits to the mankind rests upon the shoulders of the scientists and people who work tirelessly to bring a molecule to success, but the seven deadly sins of mankind will be there in each one of us, it will be upto us as how we use power and money.


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