Unethical Behaviors Have Many Forms: Lie, Ambition, and Fraud


Who would not want to become a respectable and powerful person in this world? if I am not wrong, everyone would. Well, let me tell you about a person, whose desire for power and wealth drove her to lie to the whole world in order to fulfil her ambitions. Today I will inform you about Elizabeth Holmes, her company Theranos, and one of the major frauds in the medical field that the US has experienced in recent years.

I will be talking about this medical fraud, but first of all, I have divided it into three main points to better understand the whole picture. First, I will talk about Elizabeth Holmes; second, I will talk about what Theranos was, and third, why it was a fraud.


Early life of Elizabeth Holmes and Her Career

  • According to the website Business Insider, Elizbeth Holmes was born on February 3, 1984 in Washington D.C. and when she was a child her family and her moved to Huston, Texas.
  • Elizabeth was influenced at a young age by her great-great-grandfather Christian R. Holmes, who was an engineer, inventor, surgeon, and a World War I veteran. When she was nine; she told her family that she was going to become a billionaire
  • After her high school graduation from St, John’s school in Huston, she was admitted at Stanford University and move to California to pursue her career as a chemical engineer.
  • But when she was 19, she decided to drop out of Stanford to start her own company with her tuition money. She wanted to become the next Steve Jobs

What Theranos Is and Do and Elizabeth invention

  • She started this company because she gained interest in the medicine field. This company was about running blood test by only using a finger pinprick, and a little bit of blood, which was going to be able to detect any health condition in a faster way than traditional forms.
  • Powerful people invested millions of dollars in Theranos making it to be worth over nine billion dollars.
  • Elizabeth vision was that her company and machine would change the health industry.
  • Her company was focused on a technology that would do this test, called The Edison Machine, which was a small machine that could be easily moved from one place to another.

She Lied Because the Edison Machine Did Not Work Since the Beginning

  • Elizabeth used lies to approach investors and raise funds for her company; she talked about her technology to people with no medicine nor technology experience. She was able to appeal to the patients’ emotions, so they could believe in the machine that would change their lives.
  • Elizabeth ambition for power, money, and reputation, made her lie to the people that believed in her, and her technology. She was receiving a lot of money because she made everyone believe that The Edison machine was working when in reality it never worked, all the results were never accurate.
  • She became a billionaire in her late 20s by lying to everyone in the country. The US Department of Justices stated that she knew the Edison was not functioning, and yet she kept it to herself. She sent to her patients their blood results done with traditional companies, but she made them believe that those results were made with her Technology.
  • It was not until a Wall Street Journal reporter, John Carreyrou initiated and published his investigation on Thenaros in 2015, which revealed the actual truth of the struggles the company was facing. Everyone who invested in theranos had great losses.

Wanting to achieve success through unethical behaviors, it is the worst approach for a healthy and honorable life. I would like to ask this question for you to answer it to yourself. How far would you be willing to go in order to gain power and wealth?