Using trials to treat the uninsured
This is my site Written by Alex on November 30, 2008 – 10:28 am   

A story on CBS News on October 26, 2008 about the “Perils of American Health Care” offers insight into what could be a new and disturbing phenomenon regarding clinical trials taking place because of the bad economy. The story by Rita Braver profiles a woman with a young child. After losing her job and her health insurance the woman found out she had cancer. Unable to find medical treatment anywhere else, she enrolled in a clinical trial that provided her with drugs to fight her cancer.

The story highlights the disturbing manner in which the medical industry itself is increasingly viewing trials as a valid treatment option. Trials are first and foremost about gathering data. While subjects do sometimes benefit medically from trials, trials are never treatment. They are always experimentation. Although with more and more people losing their jobs and their health insurance, the line between treatment and experimentation is becoming more and more blurry for doctors, subjects, and patients in need.

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