In Overdosed America, Dr. Abramson cites CDC data indicating that over the course of the past 100 years, life expectancy has increased by a remarkable 30 years. Yet according to the CDC report quoted by Abramson, 25 years of this gain are attributable to advances in public health. ... These include improvements such as sanitation, clean food and water, decent housing, good nutrition, higher standards of living, and widespread vaccinations.
For instance, there is a direct link between infant mortality and premature birth. Clearly the more premature an infant is when he is born, the greater likelihood of complications. In fact, according to the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services National Center for Health Statistics, complications stemming from short gestation and low birth weight are the second leading causes of infant mortality in the United States. Ironically, the advanced medical technologies used in the United States tend to increase our infant mortality rate, not decrease it. In the United States, advanced technologies and procedures have made it more practical in recent years for medical professionals to attempt to save severely premature infants. Such attempts do not always succeed, adding to the rate of infant mortality. Resuscitation is more likely to be attempted on extremely premature babies born in the United States than in many other countries, ... The extremely premature babies on whom resuscitation is unsuccessful are then counted as infant deaths, whereas they are counted as fetal deaths when resuscitation has not been attempted.
I think the negative perception is the cost of doing business the way they're doing business, ... They're marketing hype. They're selling the belief that their drug is superior, but they're not marketing superior drugs. If they want to improve the public's perception of their work, then they better improve their work.