Science & Society

Science and Society and how they get along.

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Location: Santa Barbara, California, United States

I'm a physicist and science consultant specialized in optics, lasers and optical engineering. This blog, StarkFX, looks at what applications physics is finding today. Or, if you are looking at my StarkEffects blog, it displays my views about and interest in the interface between society and science.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

What Qualifies as Medicine?

Debates about the proposed Health Reform bill usually center on the costs or savings anticipated. sometimes they center on the expected changes in performance of the medical community. But Sen. Tom Harkin (D, Iowa) added a provision to ensure that alternative medicine providers get their share. Why do we even have to consider this? If a medical procedure can be shown to be effective it won't be "alternative" anymore. Sen. Harkin is the guy who forced Harold Varmus to resign as head of NIH by creating the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM). That institution has done at least one thing to aid medicine: They have done a good job of using rigorous placebo-controlled double-blind studies to prove the total lack of efficacy for a long list of herbal "cures". Why don't we just use taxpayer's money to support Kevin Trudeau and his "Cures They Don't Want You to Know About". Oh wait, we did support that millionaire for a while -we gave him room and board and then made sure he couldn't sell actual cures -just the information.

T. Troy Stark


Blogger April said...

So true. I'm glad I found your blog. I find it very interesting.

6:51 PM  

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