Des Spence

Des Spence is a full-time family physician in Scotland. He’s written for the British Medical Journal for 7 years among other publications. He’s intent on challenging traditional medical conventions because he believes that medicine has the capacity to do good and also harm. He holds that the western world and America in particular are suffering from the effects of too much medicine, too much surgery, and over-diagnosis of many cancers and mental health conditions, effects often resulting from the pervasive financial interests of ‘big pharma’ and private medicine. Today everyone is a patient, he says, a perspective promoted by thoughtless health promotion programs, charities, and direct-to-consumer advertising, which have established the health anxiety culture that is consuming our sense of well-being. Less medicine is more medicine, he says, because physicians have a duty not only to treat the sick but also to protect the well: much of modern medicine is bad medicine.