Braving a faceless new world? Conceptualizing trust in the pharmaceutical industry and its products

Brown, Patrick R and Calnan, Michael .W. (2012) Braving a faceless new world? Conceptualizing trust in the pharmaceutical industry and its products. Health: An Interdisciplinary Journal for the Social Study of Health, Illness and Medicine, 16 (1). pp. 57-75. (The full text of this publication is not available from this repository)

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Official URL
http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1363459309360783

Abstract

Pharmaceutical products are commonly relied upon by professionals and correspondingly patients, within a wide range of healthcare contexts. This dependence, combined with the inherent risk and uncertainty surrounding both medical practice and the drugs it harnesses, points towards the importance of trust in the pharmaceutical industry - a subject which has been much neglected by researchers. This article begins to address this deficiency by mapping out a conceptual framework which may form a useful basis for future research into this important topic. The often negative portrayal of the pharmaceutical industry in the public sphere belies a state of apparent confidence in its products. The role of prescribing professionals as 'mediators of trust' amid a faceless system of production and alongside regulators as bases of assurance in the quality of drugs goes some way towards explaining this contradiction. Recent policy moves towards fostering increased patient 'expertise' and responsibility for illness management, a widening of over-the-counter medication availability and a growing market of products (mainstreamand illicit) via the internet suggest this role of 'facework' in facilitating trust may be becoming more marginal. This heightened requirement for trusting amid the unfamiliar, and an apparent willingness to do so, underlines the need for further research into trust in the industry - both mainstream and underground - and its products. Within this discussion an agenda for furthering our understandings of the political-economy of the pharmaceutical industry becomes apparent, one which might be most effectively approached by way of a broader political-economy of hope and trust.

Item Type: Article
Additional information: Published online before print December 15, 2010, doi: 10.1177/1363459309360783
Uncontrolled keywords: NICE, pharmaceutical industry, political economy of hope, trust, vulnerability
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
R Medicine > RM Therapeutics. Pharmacology
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Social Policy Sociology and Social Research
Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Social Policy Sociology and Social Research > Centre for Health Services Studies
Depositing User: Paula Loader
Date Deposited: 08 Apr 2011 08:35
Last Modified: 25 Jun 2014 15:34
Resource URI: http://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/27626 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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