chapter  8
27 Pages

Drug regulation and the Welfare State: Government, the pharmaceutical industry and the health professions in Great Britain, 1940–80

Introduction There has been increasing interest in recent years in the development of drug regulatory systems, and in locating them in a broader political, economic and social context. Some of this interest has taken the form of comparative analysis, particularly between developments in Great Britain and the USA. Abraham's account has done much to take this debate forward, 1 and others have drawn attention to the similarities and differences in the British and US responses to a number of therapeutic challenges. For example, Marks has reviewed the development of the birth control pill in this context,2 and Goodman and Walsh have offered a similar interpretation in relation to the anti-cancer drug taxol. 3 Others have examined the impact of the emergence of new diseases on drug regulation, such as Edgar and Rothman's account of the challenge that AIDS presented for the drug regulatory process in the USA.4