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People are joining hands in a chain with telescopes, syringes & pill bottles.

Are Pharmaceutical Companies Bad?

Ever since I became heavily involved as an eczema patient advocate, I’ve learned the unsettling truths of how the majority of my community feels towards pharmaceutical companies (Pharma).

Losing trust in Pharma

Many warriors have lost trust in Pharma, and therefore lean closer to fear and discourage when it comes to trying out new drugs that are on the market. I must admit, I too once thought that pharmaceutical companies were filled with selfish, greedy, and money-hungry executives who simply wanted to benefit from our disease.

Spiking drug prices

Just look at Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals who is currently under fire for spiking the price of a drug to treat a rare infant seizure disorder. They increased a vial from $40 in 2000 to almost $39,000 today -- a whopping 97,000% increase. Or Martin Shkreli, CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals, who increased a drug relied on by AIDS patients, Daraprim, by 5,000%.

Some, but not all

While there is clear evidence that some pharmaceutical companies have made choices that hinder patients from healing in order to increase their profits, I’ve learned this is not the case for all of them.

Regaining faith in Pharma

This past week I had the opportunity to speak to a group of 45 pharmaceutical colleagues from all over the globe. Their goal was to invite me and a fellow eczema warrior to better understand how eczema has impacted our lives and how we have been able to manage it over the years.

Changing beliefs

It was a true honor to be invited to this private event, as I am grateful for every opportunity in which I can share my story in order for others to better understand my community and eczema as a whole. What transpired was a different set of beliefs and greater appreciation for the Pharma industry.

Here’s what I learned from this speaking engagement:

They care about us.

Or at least their employees do. I’ve never experienced so much love, joy, and care from a pharmaceutical company before than I had from the colleagues at this event. They welcomed my skin-sis and I with open arms, hearts, and ears ready to receive all that we had to offer them. I realized these people were human beings after all, just like you and me. While they may not be living with eczema, they care enough to support us and do something about it, and I greatly admire them for that!

In order to make a true difference, we must co-create together

Pharma needs us just as much as we need them. These companies provide us science, evidence, data, and facts to support us in gaining a better understanding of how our bodies work. Without our participation, they can’t research, analyze and reflect on what works or doesn’t work. And without their support and medical advancements, our healing can potentially be delayed.

Support is on its way!

There is no better time to be living with eczema than now. Why? Because there is so much in store for us with all of the new research, science, and medicine specifically being created to help manage our eczema. All we have to do on our end is remain faithful, hopeful, and curious for what’s to come, as well as take action when opportunities arise.

With this newfound understanding and appreciation for Pharma, my vision is to close the gap between a patient’s lack of trust, and a pharmaceutical company’s hope of healing individuals one medical advancement at a time.

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