Over the last couple of years a trend has emerged of drug companies in America testing their drugs on people from other countries. The main cause s of this trend has been said to be the consumer protection and liability laws in our country that make it difficult for these companies to try these drugs within the country (Shaw, Barry, 2005). This practice has raised a lot of concerns lately with many saying it is an unethical activity that should stop. According to the food and drug administration of the country, over 80% of the drug applications approved by them in the year 2009 were performed in overseas clinic trials.
The major question has been whether these overseas medical research and trials are ethical or not (Miller, 2011). Many regard these activities as unethical business practices because they do not want to face the law in the country and are hiding in third world countries that do not have strong laws to protect their citizens. It is an unethical business action that must be addressed in the country and companies engaging in this practice should change this practice.
There have been arguments on why these companies are engaging in this practice with the common argument being the fear of lawsuits that might make it difficult for them to remain competitive. This is a major concern that should be looked into by all stakeholders including the government. The best way to address this issue would be to adopt laws protecting drug companies from lawsuits that might arise from their products while still under testing. There is also another issue of companies not selling useful drugs and instead marketing drugs that are widely needed only for the profits. This is an unethical practice as it denies the consumer the proper drug and misadvises the consumer to choose a drug that might not be helpful (Shaw, Barry, 2005).
The other common unethical business practice by most drug companies is the declination to sell useful drugs to foreign companies only because they have the potential to make more profits elsewhere. It hhas been a common practice among most drug companies and it needs to be stopped because it is unethical. Customers deserve to be given accurate information to enable them make an informed choice while choosing the drugs to purchase. It is important that companies continue to produce drugs that are either not sol or sold at lower prices for poor countries because this is the most ethical thing these countries can do (Kuhurt, 2013). This practice will be an act of kindness to the poor people in the world that are unable to afford such drugs. The companies will be doing themselves favor by giving back to the poor where necessary.
“Explosive Growth in Foreign Drug Testing Raises Ethical Questions” by Talea Miller,
“Testing Meds: Companies Look Overseas for Cheap Subjects” by Nicola Kuhrt, May 14, 2013
Retrieved from http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/drug-companies-perform-medical-tests-in-developing-countries-a-899798.html. Accessed on June 22, 2014.
Shaw, W. H., & Barry, V. (2005). Moral issues in Bussiness. Belmont, Calif: Wadsworth.