Big pharma using patients and doctors

drug trials data roche tamiflu proof evidence

Achille Marozzo’s 16th century manual of arms illustration of the cloak and dagger¹

Hiding the Science, Hiding Behind Patients and Doctors

“A leaked memo from Big Pharma industry bodies reveals strategy to combat calls by regulators to force companies to publish results,” is the subheading of an article in the Guardian (21 July 2013) titled “Big pharma mobilising patients in battle over drugs trials data.”

The Daily Telegraph has similarly documented how Roche, who manufacture Tamiflu, had refused to release information on its research into this drug despite scientists refusing to release the “research” under the FOI. British M.P.s are seeking a refund on the £1.8 billion spent on the drug for the swine flu epidemic: Demand £500m back for Tamiflu, urge MPs. Now more of the same is revealed in the Guardian:

The pharmaceutical industry has “mobilised” an army of patient groups to lobby against plans to force companies to publish secret documents on drugs trials.

Drugs companies publish only a fraction of their results and keep much of the information to themselves, but regulators want to ban the practice. If companies published all of their clinical trials data, independent scientists could reanalyse their results and check companies’ claims about the safety and efficacy of drugs.

Under proposals being thrashed out in Europe, drugs companies would be compelled to release all of their data, including results that show drugs do not work or cause dangerous side-effects…

Further Reading
What the Tamiflu saga tells us about drug trials and big pharma

Update: In Ireland we are dealing with the scandal of hospitals paying top-up payments to consultants and managers and contributing to their pensions with charitable donations. Nobody mentions the payola to Irish doctors. In the U.S. a new Sunshine Law is anticipated to deal with this where in 2012 more than $1billion was paid to doctors. In Britain £40million was the payola in the same year. Read more: here and here or even here

On a similar vein look at Dr LeFanu’s article: Swine flu scientists were too close to big pharma: Health Experts advising the World Health Organisation had done paid work for pharmaceutical companies link

1. ‘”Cloak and dagger” is an English term sometimes used to refer to situations involving intrigue, secrecy, espionage, or mystery.’Image: Wikipedia

Posted in Ethics, Medicine, Pharmaceutical Industry, Scientific Research and tagged , , , , .