Articles by Patrick Clinton - Pharmaceutical Executive


Articles by Patrick Clinton

Matters of (Re)Import

Sep 1, 2003

I suppose, when you get right down to it, I've gotten used to the idea that in this country we don't actually debate issues. We holler and call our political enemies names. We play elaborate games of spin control and do our damnedest to ensure that every question of policy, no matter how straightforward and practical, gets linked in the public mind with abortion rights, gun control, and a half dozen other completely intractable hot-button issues.

The $46 Million Man

Aug 1, 2003

When I was a kid, I remember reading magazine articles that set out to determine the worth of the human body-not its personal value, or its ability to produce valuable labor, but just the market value of the chemicals that composed it. The figure I remember hearing was $1.98. Pocket change for the crown of creation.

Pharma-Physician Conundrum

Jul 1, 2003

How should drug companies and physicians interact? And if something is wrong with the relationship, who's to blame?

On Autopilot

Jun 1, 2003

My train reading this week has been Protecting America's Health, Philip J. Hilts' enlightening history of the Food and Drug Administration. It's a book with a strong sense of how politics, people, and the uncontrollable flow of events conspire to shape institutions. It's also a good read, thanks to the author's fine eye for anecdote. Over and over, Hilts selects just the right story to capture the essence of an era in the agency's history.

The Riddle of Risk

May 1, 2003

In the excellent online magazine The Edge (, Gerd Gigerenzer, director of the Center for Adaptive Behavior and Cognition at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Berlin, poses a riddle about risk: Imagine that a 40-year-old woman has her first mammogram and it comes back positive. The incidence of the disease in her age group is 1 percent. The test is 90 percent accurate, and it has a false-positive rate of 9 percent. What's the probability that the woman has cancer?

What They're Not Saying

Apr 1, 2003

The trick in understanding any contentious public debate is to figure out what's being left out of the discussion. What, for example, is the assumption that's so obvious that no one thinks to bring it up? More often than not, when you've located that assumption, you've found the secret core of the argument -- the part that everyone's really fighting over and no one can bear to mention.


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