- 北海道大学大学院国際広報メディア・観光学院 = Graduate School of International Media, Communication, and Tourism Studies, Hokkaido University
- vol.22, pp.19-35, 2016-03-25
In Japan, two cervical cancer vaccines were approved and implemented in 2009. The severe adverse drug reaction (ADR) of these vaccines, however, was later recognized, and consequently Japanese Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare stopped recommending them in 2013. Using the concept of Ulrich Beck’s ‘sub-politics’, this paper argues that in promoting the vaccines the pharmaceutical industry as sub-political power, failed to provide the health benefit of reducing the risk of cervical cancer, but succeeded in achieving an economic benefit for itself. Due to its highly academic nature, the sub-politics of pharmaceutical industry has constructed a power that affects the government’s decisions on new drugs. Moreover, the pharmaceutical sub-politics evaded any responsibility for the ADR of cervical cancer vaccines because of the risk-free environment that it had created for itself. Overall this paper contends that the pharmaceutical sub-political power is unaccountable and profit-oriented.