Policy & Ethics

The term "opioid epidemic" is outdated to the point where the message conveyed is inaccurate. Also, every time the phrase is used most people will automatically think "pills." But pills are now a minor contributor to overdose deaths; it is illegal street drugs – especially illicit fentanyl – that’s (by far) driving the surge in overdoses. Substituting the term "fentanyl epidemic" would instead shift the blame to where it belongs, while going a long way toward halting the demonization of vitally important medicines. Words matter.
Will there be pull incentives to support the broken antibiotics market? Where is Biden?
One recent article in the bioethical literature bemoaned the expense of pursuing this noble career. Worse still, is that no one really knows what qualifies one to practice bioethics. But at $80,000 for advanced certification, it’s still a lot cheaper than a law or medical degree (although perhaps not quite as expensive as a degree in theology – which some claim might be more helpful).
There is no doubt that raising the price of sugary beverages by increasing the tax reduces consumption. A new study once again looks at how price impacts demand. Whether this reduction in consumption has the desired outcome of improving health remains unknown and frankly unstudied.
All types of arguments are made to refute: a study; bad measurements; flawed analysis; and the insidious evil intent (or at least bias). A new analysis seeks to describe conflicted interests. (Spoiler alert for those ready to blame Big Pharma, Big Device, and prescribers. They are only the tip of the iceberg.)
Kudos to Dr. Josh Bloom for persistently and valiantly beating the drum against blaming prescription opiates for the “opioid epidemic.” Sometimes battling windmills isn’t for naught.
The story of what we call the "opioid epidemic" has been distorted by lies and deception, resulting in incalculable harm done to both pain patients and those who abuse drugs. The last thing we need is more anti-opioid propaganda. Unfortunately, an article in Healthline provides just this
The recent international climate summit involved 40,000 individuals coming to Glasgow from around the world. The Brits have calculated the carbon footprint of the meeting on carbon footprints.
Instagram recently censored the Cochrane Collaboration, a highly respected nonprofit group made up of medical experts, for allegedly sharing "false content" about COVID-19. This is an inevitable consequence of the growing push for social media censorship.
Can you feel it beginning? The original great migration referred to the movement of Black Americans out of the rural south between 1916 and 1970 into the cities of the North, Midwest, and West [1] But today, it is time to discuss the next great migration as changes in our climate and sea level turn parts of our coastline into uninhabitable wetlands. It is time to talk about climate migration.
What went wrong during the COVID-19 pandemic? A team of public health researchers recently outlined some of the crucial policy mistakes we made and explained how we might avoid them in the future.
While Canada has already banned menthol from cigarettes, we are considering similar legislation. A new study reports on the initial impacts of Canada’s ban. Can real-world experience inform our policy decisions?