Thursday, November 25, 2010

Killing Us Softly With His Crap



Update: Mr. Willcocks, in the comments, makes the strongest snark-free statement about how wrong this is, from a public policy perspective, that I have ever seen from him here.


What if I told you that we, the people of British Columbia, could have a program that would save lives AND save our Health Care system millions of dollars.

And what if I told you this program would cost us pennies on the dollar to both mount and operate.

Why, if I was a public servant working in, say, the Health Ministry, I am pretty sure you would tell me to start such a program up immediately.



It turns out we already have such a program.

And what it does to save us money and save lives, in large part, is to ignore Big Pharma Bunk'um. Instead, it evaluates drugs based on real scientific and clinical evidence of efficacy.

In other words, the folks at the TI figure out which drugs actually work so that we can then decide if we want to pay for those drugs (or not) for with our public Healthcare dollars.

And, again, it does so free and unfettered from the (often commercial) interests of Big Pharma.

But here's the thing.

The Therapeutics Initiative is doomed.


Because the government of Mr. Gordon Campbell has decided to kill it.


Now, the demise of the TI has been rumoured for some time.

However, according to what Andrew MacLeod is currently reporting in The Tyee, those rumours do not appear to be in any way exaggerated based on a recent letter from, and the statements of, Gordon Campbell's Deputy Health minister Mr. John Dyble:

"...The government continues to move away from using the Therapeutics Initiative at the University of British Columbia to look at the evidence on new drugs, he (Mr. Dyble) noted, though it hasn't gone as quickly as the government had hoped.

"Due to concerns over the low response rate to our 2009 Request for Proposals, we have undertaken a new procurement process to establish this roster," he (Mr. Dyble) said. When a new contract is in place the existing relationship with UBC will end, he (Mr. Dyble) said...."

So why, is the TI being killed?

Well, in my opinion, it is because the government of Mr. Gordon Campbell wants MORE input from Big Pharma about what is good for THEM (ie. not necessarily us).

In point of fact, that is actually being written into the new provincial procedures for evaluating drugs as double-speak known as "sponsor engagement points".

Which, again in my opinion, is nothing but ideological codswallop (ie. Crap with a capital 'C') that is designed to cost us money while it enriches Big Pharma.


Paul Willcocks also raised the warning flag on this matter recently based on a strong piece by Margaret Munro in the VSun.



Owl Pharm said...

Someone posted a list of lobbyist appointments a while back it was in regards to the BCR theft, anyway you could see Big Pharma was working the BC cabinet big time. Does big pharma show up for these meetings with big brown paper bags? For feck sakes I want my democracy back!

BC Mary said...

Aw RossK ... what are we going to do about this Campbell-guy? Can't we peel him off like the blood-sucking tick he is?

Danny Williams resigned today as premier of Newfoundland. The Newfies don't seem to have trouble replacing a premier -- they just asked the Deputy Premier to stand in.

Oh. I think I remember now. Didn't Campbell abolish the role of the BC Deputy Premier?

Gary E said...

Follow the money Ross K. Follow the money.

paul said...

I can almost always, with some effort, accept that government had a good-faith belief it was acting in the public interest in making a decision. Wrong, perhaps, self-serving, based on fallacies, but still with an argument there was some consideration of the public interest.
Not this time. This it a flat betrayal of taxpayers and health-care consumers to serve the interests of large drug companies that donate to the party in power and much more on lobbying and efforts to influence public opinion.

North Van's Grumps said...

History, BC Mary, is what's stopping Campbell from walking away from being Premier.

"Bennett (William R.) formally stepped down as Premier August 6, 1986 but retained his seat and according to convention, the appointments of his ministers should have terminated at his departure."


They were Socreds, but the make-up of the BC Liberals are no different than the Social Credit Party... their constitution... probably very much alike.

Remember what Bill Bennett said of who fired him. It wasn't the Cabinet Caucus, it was Gordon Campbell's signature that was on the termination papers.

If Campbell were to up and leave, he would have to terminate all of his ministers. He put them there. Its not an incoming BC Liberal Leader that can remove them. Orders in Council...signed by a Premier, not a Leader.

North Van's Grumps said...

I know you probably don't want to hear this RossK but on the issue of Grade 4's, did they get the memo from Election BC on what constitutes word(s)?

eg “May 12, 2009” is five words
“10/10/11” is five words

“$100” is three words (one hundred dollars)
“$1 million” is three words (one million dollars)

e.g. “85” is two words (eighty-five)
e.g. “2010” is three words (two thousand ten)

"Elections BC will count the number of words in the statement as if the written statement was
being read aloud. Further, abbreviations, numerals, acronyms and initialisms will be read as if
they were written in full."

However the exception to the rule is that "Election BC" will not be read as Election British Columbia, that's the law.

cfvua said...

Pompous arrogance. Fuel for the fire. I see more enraged canvassers volunteering. These half-wits are engineering their own demise. It is almost like they are daring the public to recall them. Keep it up and they'll get recalled almost automatically, no questions and even a liberal hack placed in the right spot won't help.

cfvua said...

Sorry to get off topic last post. The same principle would for sure apply to big pharma, big gas, big mills, and big mining,big P3s to mention a few. Oh yes, and big rail. One should not be surprised, but one should be appalled and be doing everything to prevent further instances from occurring through recall. With the balance of seats won by just a few votes the liberals should have loked in the mirror and wondered what happened, but no......

North Van's Grumps said...

RossK I know that this is your writing style eg. "NowWeAllPayIt" but according to Election BC:

"[For example, if the statement read
“recalltheMember”, Elections BC would consider it to say “recall the Member” and count it as three words; however, the statement would still be published as “recalltheMember”.]" - Craig James


"Recall and Initiative Act s. 19(2)(c)
Number of words in proponent statement"

Anonymous said...

What really makes me gag is, BC children so hungry, they can't do their school work. The ministers and the mla's support, the monster called Campbell. Craig James is just as evil as Campbell, he is Campbell's butt boy. We can also see from him, the same evil treachery, Campbell requires. Sending the RCMP to terrorize, an elderly lady in her eighties. Threatening other people, into not signing the recall. Campbell is filth, on everything he touches. Shame on you Ministers, mla's, and the RCMP for doing Campbell's dirty work. 1000 times, shame on the entire scurvy lot of you, to support an ugly, sadistic, cruel, vile monster, who could give a s..t less, if our BC children are hungry. All of you, are disgusting and belong in, the ninth ring of Dante's Inferno. BC people, will never forget nor forgive, the evil of the BC Liberals, for their treachery against the citizens and children, in this province.