Recently there was a series of 3 shows on BBC Radio 4 which are a great example of how the media can really do it’s job: informing people about important things, Priceless! The time would be well spent listening to these very well informed shows.
Link to Inside Health Podcast – 12 August – Conflicted Health Part 1: Are conflicts of interest in medicine out of control and undermining public trust, or an over-hyped concern? Dr Mark Porter investigates the hidden influences driving your doctor.
Link to Inside Health Podcast – 19 August – Conflicted Health Part 2: Dr Mark Porter examines the hidden conflicts of interest that may affect how your GP or specialist treats you. He discovers that the advice patient groups give you is also not immune to the influences of organisations such as pharmaceutical companies.
Link to Inside Health Podcast – 26 August – Conflicted Health Part 3: Dr Mark Porter examines how powerful lobbying groups like the food and alcohol industries steer public health policy in the direction that suits them most.
(Another excellent source is a book called “Bad Pharma: How Medicine is Broken, and How We Can Fix It” By a doctor and science writer, Ben Goldacre.)
For me the powerful lesson behind all this is that the priorities of the ‘Health Industry’ often may not be entirely about our welfare.
And that instead of putting all our trust in them we might do well to take our health and wellbeing into our own hands as much as possible. How?
Some regular exercise, mindfulness practice, eating mindfully, compassion for ourselves and others: there is plenty of evidence that these things actually do work and there are no side effects, other than making the world a better place for others as well.