Article Abstract

And now for something completely different: drugs that work!—The patients’ perspective

Authors: Peter Kapitein


The result of drug development so far is beyond expectations and also beyond what is possible. The reason for this is probably that the aim is not a better quality of life for the patient and her loved ones but profit. Working together with patients on an equal basis—and in the patients’ best interest—will bring better drugs to the market that work and provide better quality of life and with less severe side effects. For the pharmaceutical companies that want to benefit patients, it will bring enough profit. Essential is that we are honest about our interests and respect the interest of one another. And go for the win-win situation instead of the compromise. We can also do better by doing research on combinations of new and existing drugs. This might be faster available for patients and also cheaper. The government can help by making the rules for drug development easier on safety. The cooperation with patients will still make things safe enough. The government has to support the patient advocacy groups financially to make them less dependent on the pharmaceutical companies. And finally, the patient advocacy groups can do a lot to make the patients, doctors, researchers, government and industry more cancer literate.