The pharmaceutical industry is one which is complicated and opaque. I have a dream, a world free from incurable and chronic diseases and conditions, one where patients are empowered to speak for themselves, one where a cure can be accessible to every person, regardless of background, income level, gender, and even location.
Fighting for true cures in the pharmaceutical industry
In a recent exchange with someone who is relatively respected in the medical space, my idea of CuraHOPE was thrashed and bashed, and that same person told me how complex the space was. He mentioned about the different stakeholders who exist in the space, and how naïve my thinking was, and that my approach was wrong. I could not agree with him and I asked myself if I was too naïve in my beliefs and whether it is truly possible to change this industry the way I foresee it to be.
I Felt Indignation…
However, I know that in this journey, many similar comments will come up repeatedly. Only time will tell if the world and vision I see every day will come to fruition.
These are some things which drive me everyday:
- Price of drugs continuously increasing
- Lack of transparency in clinical trials and research reports
- Too much lobbying helping pharmaceutical companies, and not enough for the patients
- Huge profit margins which are not tailored towards patients
- Pharma companies spend more on sales and marketing than on research and development
Do not think that this is an imaginary phenomenon, I read about it here (The Clever, 2017), on AJMC (AJMC, 2016), here (MANCUNION, 2016) and even on Forbes (Forbes, 2013). These are just some coverage, but they often fade away with the passage on time.
Do I think I can truly change the pharmaceutical industry in ten years’ time? I do not know, but I have not seen significant momentum by sufferers to band together and drive cures. There is insufficient true movement to gather a community of incurable diseases and chronic diseases, and get them to be in control of their lives. We have support groups, but insufficient momentum. Can anyone truly say they trust a pharmaceutical company?
I am doing this because no one else is doing it. I am doing this because sufferers, once informed of their chronic or incurable diseases, often do not fight beyond getting their diseases treated and managed. For true cures to happen, we need that energy, the dream of one day being free from diseases to drive people.
This is David vs Goliath, and in the real world, David doesn’t always win. At CuraHOPE, we don’t think we are David, but we hope people can unite behind a brand, and eventually fight for true cures. We might very well fail, but this will be something we do for the rest of our lives.