Mulit-million dollar fraud sanctions at bioethics centre

Discussion in 'Health and medical' started by Mfg, Dec 17, 2003.

  1. Mfg

    Mfg Guest

    This not about heart disease, per se. But it applies I think. You are BUYING something when you take
    a drug, being told one side when you read their studies and glossy brochures, see their
    advertisements on television, in magazines and newspapers. Buyer beware.

    The standard treatment for sepsis, an infection of the blood, costs $50 per day, but Eli Lilly has
    a new drug out called Xigris, which may not be any better than older treatments but costs $6,800
    per treatment. That's not exactly an easy sell, but Lilly has hired a PR firm to launch a campaign
    called "The Ethics, the Urgency and the Potential," whose premise is that it is "unethical not to
    use the drug." "To reinforce the point," writes Carl Elliott, "Lilly has funded a $1.8 million
    project called the 'Values, Ethics & Rationing in Critical Care Task Force,' in which bioethicists
    and physicians from various American medical schools will examine the ethics of rationing certain
    drugs and services. It is a brilliant strategy. There is no better way to enlist bioethicists in
    the cause of consumer capitalism than to convince them they are working for social justice. ...
    It's no mystery, then, why pharmaceutical companies want to brand themselves with bioethics. But
    do bioethicists really want to brand themselves with Pharma? To take only one example: The
    pharmaceutical sponsors of the University of Pennsylvania Center for Bioethics and its faculty's
    projects are now facing multimillion dollar fraud sanctions (AstraZeneca), a Nigerian lawsuit for
    research abuse (Pfizer), massive class-action payouts (Wyeth-Ayerst), a criminal probe into
    obstruction of justice (Schering Plough), an ongoing fraud lawsuit (Merck and Medco), and
    allegations of suppressing research data on suicide in children (GlaxoSmithKline)." SOURCE: Slate,
    December 15, 2003 More web links related to this story are available at: To discuss this story in the PR Watch
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