The New Alchemists

Bernie Garrett

From: £6.99

Health scams come in all shapes and sizes from the suppression of side-effects from prescription drugs to the unproven benefits of ‘traditional’ health practices, taking advantage of the human tendency to assume good intentions in others. So how do we avoid being deceived? Professor of Nursing, Bernie Garrett, explores real-world examples of medical malpractice, pseudo and deceptive health science, dietary and celebrity health fads, deception in alternative medicine and problems with current healthcare regulation, ending with a simple health-scam detection ‘kit’. And he looks at how these practices and ineffective regulations affect our lives.

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Introduction (The art of the con; Are we obsessed with our health? Science in the age of alternative health; Trust me, I’m not a doctor;  Where’s the harm? I want to believe) ; Bad medicine (The rise of modern medicine; Big Pharma; Dubious private clinics; A matter of trust;     Ineffective remedies and diagnoses; Major medical blunders; Conspiracy theories – just because you’re paranoid…; Is modern medicine safe?) ; Health scams (What is a health scam? The nature of deception; A profusion of health scams and devious practices; Pandemic scams; Conspiratorial thinking); Alternative medicine (The alternative medicine business; What’s in a name; Integrative medicine and research; Alternative medicine and health claims; Is it safe?  Regulation and education; A growing phenomenon); Health, fame and fortune (Success and irrationality; Health and celebrity; Celebrities and the anti-vaccination crisis; Absolute certainty – tunnel vision and success;  Cargo cult thinking; A matter of trust; Are we all gullible? Who is the target? Mixing it up with half truths; Science, but not as we know it; Naturally it’s good for you; Clinical significance and importance; Make it simple; Social influence; The rise of social media; Internet health scams; The psychology of scanning and susceptibility to persuasion; Risk of deception; Trust and maintaining authority) ; We will make you like our products; Conclusion: who do you trust? (The myth of perfect health; Being proactive about health; Avoiding ineffective interventions; Regression to the mean and the trajectory of illnesses; The power of placebo and nocebo; Taking back charge of your health; conclusion)

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About the Author

Bernie Garrett is a professor at the University of British Columbia School of Nursing with over 35 years of experience in clinical nursing and nursing education. He is a registered nurse and holds a PhD and a number of specialist health and educational qualifications. He has authored numerous research papers and chapters in edited books, and several textbooks as lead author.

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