Author: H. Tristram Engelhardt Jr.
Pages: 245 pages
Published: May 27th 2008
Innovation and the Pharmaceutical Industry: Critical Reflections on the Virtues of Profit examines the central role of profit in the development of pharmaceuticals, medical devices, and health care generally. Recent efforts to understand this role have often underestimated and even dismissed its importance, arguing for its replacement by other means and mechanisms. However, as the essays in this volume attest, it would be impossible to account adequately for the range of pharmaceuticals and medical devices that have become part of everyday medicine without recognizing that the depth and scope of innovations are tied not simply to altruism, a concern for the common good, or the pursuit of knowledge for its own sake, but crucially to the pursuit of private good and of individual profit.
Balancing a concern for theory and practice, the analyses and evaluations provided in these essays touch directly on many of the most heated and important debates in pharmaceutical ethics, such as profit margins, corporate social responsibility, drug advertising, litigation, patents, and parallel trade. Reflecting critically on the problems and prospects of medical innovation, they invite a rethinking of the foundations of the bioethics and business ethics of the pharmaceutical and medical device industries by focusing on the long-term impact of policy decisions for human health and well-being.