Norway Has 23 Case of H1N1, Decides to Vaccinate Entire Population

July 2, 2009

June 2, 2009

Norway falls victim to the hype dished out by Big Pharma and its partner in crime, the U.N.’s World Health Organization. From the Norway Post:

The Norwegian health authorities will this fall begin a program of mass vaccination against the A H1N1 flu, also called the swine flu. A total of 9.4 million doses have been ordered from the suppliers.

All will be given two innoculations, two weeks apart, Bergens Tidende reports. The total cost will be NOK 650 million.

So far, only 23 cases of the flu has been diagnosed in Norway, but the authorities expect that the number will increase.


Drug Companies Using Third-World People as Guinea Pigs

June 7, 2009

David Gutierrez
Natural News
June 4, 2009

Pharmaceutical companies are increasingly turning to the practice of testing their drugs on Third World populations in order to keep costs down, according to a report by researchers from Duke University, titled Ethical and Scientific Implications of the Globalization of Clinical Research.

The practice has raised concerns over exploitation of vulnerable populations and the accuracy of research conducted in such conditions.

“We don’t want to imagine that lower-income countries are the clinical trial mill for higher-income countries,” said lead author Kevin A. Schulman.

The Duke researchers compared the prevalence of clinical drug trial “outsourcing” by looking at the locations of 300 studies published in three major medical journals in either 1995 or 2005. They found that the number of countries taking part in clinical trials had increased by more than 100 percent over the course of those 10 years.

This finding is consistent with information gathered from the FDA by researchers from the Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development. Researchers found that between 1997 and 2007, the percentage of FDA-registered principal investigators based in the United States has decreased from 86 percent to 54 percent.

Tufts researcher Kenneth A. Getz said that drug companies are motivated primarily by the lower cost of conducting research in the Third World, as well as the increased ease of recruiting study participants who have never received certain drugs.

Yet the relatively low cost of recruiting participants in the Third World may present a problem in itself, the Duke researchers warned, with poor people being unduly swayed by the promise of large payments and free medical treatment. Such obvious incentives could convince people to disregard the risks of participating in drug trials.

The researchers also expressed concern that drugs might act differently in the bodies of people living in significantly different environments and with drastically different developmental histories than First World populations.

“There are issues with the interpretability of the findings” of outsourced studies, Glickman warned.

Sources for this story include:

Drug Samples Handed Out by Doctors Pose Risk to Patient Health

June 7, 2009

S. L. Baker
Natural News
June 3, 2009

Countless U.S. doctors regularly give away free drug samples provided by the pharmaceutical industry to their patients. It’s a practice that may simply seem, at first glance, like an altruistic way to help sick people save money. However, two academics have written a report just published in PLoS Medicinethat lambasts this tradition as not only costly in the long run but downright dangerous to the health of patients.

Researcher Susan Chimonas of the Center on Medicine as a Profession at Columbia University, and Jerome Kassirer, former editor of the New England Journal of Medicine and a distinguished professor at Tufts University School of Medicine, call handing out free drug samples as “anachronistic as bloodletting…” They also say the practice is “not effective in improving drug access for the indigent, does not promote rational drug use, and raises the cost of care.”

That’s just the opposite of the hype Big Pharma has been putting out for years. The pharmaceutical giants have longed claimed that providing free drug starter packs is a type of public service that allows drug companies to help patients who are struggling financially. But Dr. Chimonas and Dr. Kassirer point to research that documents the fact that low-income, uninsured patients actually are less likely to receive free samples of medications than patients who have great insurance coverage. What’s more, the researchers point out in their report that drug samples frequently “are appropriated by physicians for personal or family use.”

In addition, the PLoS Medicine article notes that one study concluded nearly half of pharmaceutical sales representatives surveyed admitted to taking drug samples themselves and/or handing them out for their friends and relatives to use. According to Dr. Chimonas and Dr. Kassirer, these findings show that prescription drug samples often reach people they weren’t intended for — and the obvious result is that these medications are frequently misused and abused.

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