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“Blood for Sale” and “Drug Dilemmas”: Articles Reviews

Blood for Sale

In the article “Blood for Sale”, the author makes a case that the sale of blood in a commercial market has drastic repercussions for both the donor and the receiver. The author’s position on the issue is made clear by starting the article with a brief history of Plasma International, a US Company that originated on the concept of paying for blood. The case against the purchase of blood is made as the accusations against this company illustrate the dangers of a system in which blood can be purchased.

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The donors are compensated very poorly, approximately 15 cents/pint according to the article, while the blood is sold on the market for a significant profit, $25/pint according to the same source. In addition, the article indicates the types of people who sell their blood for money are typically those from whom blood-born illnesses are prevalent. As the blood becomes a commodity, donors begin to feel as if they are giving away something that will provide profit to someone else. Because they are no longer involved in providing an altruistic gift, as is illustrated through a comparison with the British system and interview, donors feel less inclined to participate.

The repercussions of allowing blood for sale on the potential receiver are equally grave. To begin with, the company that controls the blood sets the price, creating a system in which only the wealthy can afford to survive as the price per pint excludes poor people from receiving the blood they need. Turning blood into a commodity also opens up the entire system to widespread corruption.

With this switch, fewer restrictions upon the screening of blood will be enforced, meaning that there will be less assurance that the blood received will not contain elements that turn out to be deadly. Because donors are discouraged from providing blood at not-for-profit programs, the commercialized programs become even stronger in the marketplace, with the end result being a completely commercially controlled system. Human life becomes equated more specifically to a dollar value. This bleak picture is contrasted against Britain’s system in which blood cannot be purchased and the attitude of the individuals who have become regular blood donors.

Drug Dilemmas

In the article “Drug Dilemmas,” the author makes the case that there is no valid reason for the drug companies in America to be making the types of profits they are in comparison with other U.S. corporations. Although the drug companies often argue, and the public accepts the argument, that these prices are necessary to fund further research and development, the author charges that this claim is not valid.

To begin with, the research and development department is typically budgeted with significantly less money than the marketing department. In addition, the companies have developed very few new drugs in recent history, preferring instead to create copy-cat drugs that may or may not work better than the drug they are replacing. The drugs that have been developed, according to the author, have been mostly developed on tax-payer money rather than through the pharmaceutical companies themselves. Having debunked development, research is also shown to be insufficient as few of the drugs that have been produced have been tested to see if they actually introduce an improvement over previous drugs. Yet, there are deeper and more valid reasons why research and development are made difficult for drug companies.

Testing of new drugs is made difficult in this country, leading many small drug companies, where the real development is happening, to test their products overseas. This foreign testing introduces a moral dilemma for these companies once their drug is approved in the United States as it seems they should be obliged to continue providing the drug for the test subjects as well. The question of where to draw the line in making this drug available in the test country introduces yet more moral and ethical issues in the face of economic reality.

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If medication is provided to the test subjects, how does one answer to others in the community with the same health problem? If medication is provided to the community, how does one define exactly what will constitute that community? While it seems only fair that the test country should also benefit from the drug developed using its people as test subjects, the economics of the situation make this difficult. This is because test countries are typically poor while test subjects are typically the poorest among them. In addition, even should the drug be distributed for free, the company must still incur significant expenses in establishing offices and maintaining personnel for its distribution and proper management.

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StudyCorgi. (2021, October 26). “Blood for Sale” and “Drug Dilemmas”: Articles Reviews.

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"“Blood for Sale” and “Drug Dilemmas”: Articles Reviews." StudyCorgi, 26 Oct. 2021,

1. StudyCorgi. "“Blood for Sale” and “Drug Dilemmas”: Articles Reviews." October 26, 2021.


StudyCorgi. "“Blood for Sale” and “Drug Dilemmas”: Articles Reviews." October 26, 2021.


StudyCorgi. 2021. "“Blood for Sale” and “Drug Dilemmas”: Articles Reviews." October 26, 2021.


StudyCorgi. (2021) '“Blood for Sale” and “Drug Dilemmas”: Articles Reviews'. 26 October.

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