Prescription drugs, patients, doctors, pharmaceutical companies and regulators the focus of Coe Thursday Forum

Extra: Rod Pritchard, Secretary of the College
(319) 399-8605 or

2017-02-24 09:21:56 - General

Rebecca Anderson '71, Medical and Scientific Writer
Rebecca Anderson '71
Medical and Scientific Writer

Contemporary issues affecting patients, doctors, drug makers and regulators will be the focus of the Coe Thursday Forum series March 9, 16, 23 and 30. Led by freelance medical and scientific writer Rebecca Anderson, a 1971 graduate of Coe, this series will cover everything from significant historical events and drug discovery to clinical trials and regulatory oversight.

The rapid rise in the cost of prescription drugs has prompted ongoing discussions by everyone from patients to politicians and pharmacists to pharmaceutical executives. The first week begins with a description of the events that triggered the need for regulatory oversight.

The second week presents an overview of the multiple ways that drugs are discovered. The third session explains how drugs move from test tube to the pharmacy. The evolution of human experimentation from World War II to the present will be described using several historically significant events such as the Declaration of Helsinki, the Tuskegee syphilis study, and the clinical trials for treating cancer, arthritis, Ebola and Zika.

The fourth week will unite information presented in the first three lectures through a discussion of contemporary issues affecting consumers, regulators and the pharmaceutical industry. Examples include: drug pricing, prescription drug abuse/overdosing, the placebo effect, drug testing in women and children, nutritional supplements, Right to Try laws, watchful waiting, and drug advertising.

Thursday Forum lectures are held in Kesler Lecture Hall in Hickok Hall on the Coe campus. Each session begins with registration and refreshments from 8:45-9:15 a.m., followed by the class until 11:30 a.m. An optional luncheon is offered at the conclusion of each series.

The Coe College Thursday Forum Series

Coe College Thursday Forum courses are open to all adults. Admission to the entire four-week course can be purchased for $35 for this month’s forum on the first day or in advance. Admission to individual lectures is $12 per week. The closing luncheons cost an additional $8. Payment can be made in person on Thursday mornings by cash or personal check. Credit card payments can be processed online only. For more information about paying by credit card or directly from your checking account, or to order gift certificates, call (319) 399-8523.

For the remainder of the 2016-17 school year, the Thursday Forum schedule includes:

  • "Plant Stewardship in the 21st Century" - April 6, 13, 20, 27
  • "The Acts of the Apostles: Luke’s Second Volume" - May 4, 11, 18, 25