The current economic problems may have a silver lining. Due to their high cost fewer prescription drugs prescriptions are being filled today as people find ways to cut back. In the last quarter of 2008 6.8% of patients didn't fill their prescriptions for brand-name drugs and 4.1% failed to fill their generic prescriptions. May not sound like much but it's a 22% jump compared to the first quarter of 2007.
I say there may be a silver lining in this problem because many patients are going to realize how little the prescriptions were doing for them in the first place, or at least appreciate the cost-benefit ratio. They may also discover some of their health problems were actually side-effects from the prescriptions they were taking, either by themselves or as in combination with other drugs they're taking.
Hopefully some folks are going to look for other, better answers to their health problems. Most of us start to use complementary and alternative medicine because we're out of options. Hopefully a few people are going to try CAM because they're looking for a better, cheaper and safer alternative.