Medicine or poison? While providing immense benefits, drugs are not the perfect solution. They only work on a proportion of patients, sometimes they harm us, and we're not very good at taking them as we should. For some diseases, particularly those affecting only developing countries, there are no drugs available or they are too expensive. Meanwhile the NHS drug bill - the greatest cost, after staff - continues to rise. Drugs seem to be the answer to everything from rheumatism, through birth control, to depression. And yet while agonising over pill-popping, we consume vast amounts of untested complementary remedies. How has this situation come about? What part do pharmaceuticals play in modern life? And where might we go in the future? These are some of the questions tackled in the 'Big Picture on Drug Development'.
Public (what does this mean?)