The Watchdog

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URGENT!!!! Keith talks to Jane Burgemeister on line from Vienna about her research into Big Pharma fraud tonight – SATURDAY 17 JULY at 10.15 on RadioLive

17 July 2010


Keith talks to Jane Burgemeister on line from Vienna about her research into Big Pharma fraud tonight
– SATURDAY 17 JULY at 10.15 on Radio Live.

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Bring Big Pharma under control.

17-Jul-2010 02:16

by Keith Stewart

We all know one black bunny, and mine is a friend who worked doing PR for big pharma for the last few years, I asked him why there seemed to be no great concern about his masters being hit with fines of over US $3 billion for fraud this year. That much was “chicken feed” he said, hardly a month’s turnover for the big companies.

Recently an ex Pfizer executive, Peter Rost was reported in the US media commenting, “You literally have a situation I think where the government pretends to go after these guys, the companies pretend to follow the law, but it’s just a game for the consumption of the masses; so people will think that the wheels of justice are actually moving.”

In another case AstraZeneca’s US$520 million fine for fraudulent marketing of Seroquel reprresented just 16.5% of the US$8.6 billion it is estimated it earned from the fraud.

Now we have the biggest Big Pharma fraud of all, the so called swine flu pandemic. Two years ago the director general of the World Health Organisation (WHO) Margaret Chan declared the outbreak to be a phase 6 pandemic, the highest rated of all. This made it the worst flu epidemic in 41 years, which Chan said, “Based on past experience, this pandemic will be with us for some months, if not years, to come.

That declaration came just one month after WHO reduced the measures by which phase 6 is definined. No longer does a pandemic need to cause large numbers of deaths, or even large numbers of serious cases in outbreaks, nor do there need to be simultaneous outbreaks of the illness.

Once the definition for phase 6 had been softened, it gave pharmaceutical companies the ability to release flu vaccines to the public that were still being tested. In effect to sell these to governments startled by the pandemic warning in order to protect their threatened populations, who would then test their efficacy on those populations. You and I became two-fold servants for Big Pharma.

At one level our taxes were used to pay their profits on products that were not yet through the pharmaceutical investment phase that included extensive testing for human side ffects and efficacy.

The bonus was that we became the guinea pigs in these free trials. You don’t need to be a cynic to see that the change,”…obviously favours those who have to sell products’, according to epidemiologist Tom Jefferson.

The latest review by the Cochrane Collaboration, and independent medical research project based in the UK, found in June 2010 that; Influenza vaccines have a modest effect in reducing influenza symptoms and working days lost. There is no evidence that they affect complications, such as pneumonia, or transmission.The review also warned to take care in evaluating any studies of flu vaccines because most were funded by pharmaceutical companies and there is evidence of widespread manipulation of conclusions and spurious notoriety of the studies.

Yet the WHO pandemic declaration a year ealrier encouraged governments around the world to spend millions on those same vaccines – how?

According to one of the most influential puublications in the medical world, the British Medical Journal, the reason WHO helped sell vaccines was the influence of Big Pharma. An investigation by the BMJ and the Bureau of Investigative Journalism found that 3 of the scientists who wrote the changes were in the pay of Big Pharma, and that WHO failed to declare their conflict of interest.

Another new report, this time by the Council of Europe has declared the swine flu pandemic as an unjustified waste of public money that was promoted by drug company influence.

The estimated cost to the British taxpayer was £1.2 billion, to New Zealand it was $3.63 million in extra vaccine costs alone, not as much as party central in Auckland, but a significant waste of money.

So what to do with this wayward industry that is robbing us blind? Well the first thing is to support Pharmac’s tough line in dealing with them, and the second is to promote legislation that gives the government the power to sieze any profits that are down to their illegal behaviour. It happens to P traffickers, and it should happen to other illegal drug traders who have fancy offices, too.

Keith talks to Jane Burgemeister on line from Vienna about her research into Big Pharma fraud tonight at 10.15 on RadioLive

July 17, 2010 - Posted by | Fighting corruption in NZ, Human rights

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