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HomeFocus → Desperate and Duped? GoFundMe campaigns raise millions for questionable treatments

Desperate and Duped? GoFundMe campaigns raise millions for questionable treatments Print E-mail
Written by Medical Xpress   
Tuesday, 23 October 2018 16:46
 
People seeking dubious, potentially harmful treatment for cancer and other ailments raised nearly $7 million over two years from crowdfunding sites, a study found. Echoing recent research on campaigns for stem cell therapies, the findings raise more questions about an increasingly popular way to help pay for costly, and sometimes unproven, medical care.  
 
Soliciting money on GoFundMe and other sites eliminates doctors, hospitals, insurance companies and other "gatekeepers" that can be a barrier to expensive treatment, said lead author Dr. Ford Vox, an ethicist and brain injury expert at Shepherd Center rehabilitation hospital in Atlanta. His study was published Tuesday in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Dr. Vox calls it "the democratization of economic power through social media" but says it can pose an ethical dilemma. Online fundraising "has a big bright side" when it helps patients pay for legitimate care, he said." Communities are really being able to rally around people in rough times. That's fantastic, but there is this very clear dark side" when treatments sought are worthless or even dangerous.
 

Last Updated on Tuesday, 23 October 2018 16:49
 


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