Writing to the PM & your MP to preserve Arthritis research…

Part of the problem is successive governments have been made up largely of politicians with zero background in science, and unfortunately as we have recently seen, not much in mathematics either, where their numbers don’t add up and give a whole new meaning to long division, subtraction & “borrowing from the left”😂😅 (This will only have any meaning for those who had maths teachers that would not allow pocket calculators). This poor education in science means we have politicians who can’t push back when they are being con’d. The recent PPE scandals show that fleecing the government and taxpayers & the NHS is still quite lucrative. Shame on them. If that money was given to nurses & junior docs we’d be so much better off.

Unfortunately we like voting for politicians who are entertainers, instead of people like Professor Sir Chris Whitty (my quiet hero), who would be able to focus funding towards the public good based on sound science, rather than a sound bite.

As if that were not enough of a challenge, good scientists and clinicians face huge challenges from vested commercial interests, where a cure would terminate lucrative income derived from continuous expensive treatment. Just look up Nobel Prize winner Dr Barry Marshall, who struggled with getting big pharma and their sponsored clinical academics to drop the long-standing belief in medical teaching and practice that stress and lifestyle factors were the major causes of peptic ulcer disease.

(there’s an article on the NIH website, I’ll post it if I can find it).

Given how much it costs and the suffering caused by this chronic condition we should ask our respective MPs to keep public control, maintain & assure SERC funding for such research, and it’s direction led by patients & clinicians, not by big pharma as it mainly is today. All too often Governments seek “industry consultation”, and offer generous tax breaks for research into developing lucrative treatments, but not cures, getting hoodwinked instead of showing leadership.

I can speak from first hand experience (and shame) having been part of big commercial industry that (all industries do this) has been pulling the wool over the government, regulator and public’s eyes as a key pillar of their success strategy. If the public, govt and regulators were happy to swallow the con with feeble challenge, who were we to argue, given our loyalty was only to shareholders and were paid to maximise profits.

So do write to your in MP in addition to the PM, after all , you are closer to your MP than the PM, and a concerted effort there from many regions may eventually lead to greater good by getting RA on the radar.