Thursday, September 3, 2009

Pfizer pays record fine for illegal promotions

Just a short time ago we read the news that Wyeth had paid ghostwriters to promote it's hormone treatment, which turned out to greatly increase invasive cancer in women.
Additionally we learned, that this type of ghostwriting for medical journals is a common problem

Now it's Pfizer turn!. Can we trust these companies to care about anything but the profit making?

Pfizer pays record fine for illegal promotions

To make matters worse this is the fourth time that Pfizer has been caught doing this!!

Authorities called Pfizer a repeat offender, noting it is the fourth such settlement of government charges in the last decade. They said the government would monitor the company's conduct for the next five years to rein in the abuses.

Loucks said that even as Pfizer was negotiating deals on past misconduct, they were continuing to violate the same laws with other drugs.

Incredible! Their profits are clearly so massive they can swallow up these fines and carry on as usual.

To promote the drugs, authorities said Pfizer invited doctors to consultant meetings at resort locations, paying their expenses and providing perks.

"They were entertained with golf, massages and other activities," said Mike Loucks, the U.S. attorney in Massachusetts.

Then the doctors, after a good palm greasing would promote Pfizers drugs.



    Not, this has been going on for as long as these corporations have been around.

    It's all about the marketing, baby!

    Do I trust them? Of course not.

  2. This .my dear is not news. Even non medical DR’s have been courted by big pharma for many years.
    When one sees some report supposedly written by a dr. it could very well have been written by a dentist a veterinarian or even a lowly Biologist. Trust me on this one. For some the junkets to the Bahamas in the dead of winter are hard to refuse. I personally have known a Dr of English Literature who made his entire living by ghost writing articles in medical journals, but hey he’s a Dr right..

  3. Maggie: it is the marketing by any means.
    Corporate corruption?

    Silv: NOT a lowly biologist!
    How low will these guys stoop?

  4. Very low indeed it would seem. But hey what would a Biologist know about the human condition or the condition of any other living organism for that matter? Well I’ll tell you, Biologists know quite a lot about what makes this thing we call life go, Medical DR’s on the other hand have but a very rudimentary knowledge of biology. The Biology that is taught in med school is little more than the Bio 101 that is taught in any high school biology class and can be passed by any idiot who tries even the slightest bit.

    Sadly there are many DR’s in all fields who could not even spell the word ethic. These people simply sign their names to papers that were written by the companies who pay for the perks.

    If Biologists were allowed to publish papers honestly and without pressure big pharma would not be doing nearly as well.

    Take for example, If I were to tell you that of the 24,000 prescription meds on the North American market somewhere around 250 are required for a GOOD quality health care in any third world country and seeing that Canada is not yet considered a third world country less than 250 would be required here as we don’t suffer many of the tropical diseases like malaria etc.. As a matter of fact we could get along quite well with about 212 scripted meds. If I told you that and I published that in a medical journal , how far do you think that would go? Remember one thing , the truth is the last thing that you will read in regards to big pharma and the truth is the last thing that you will hear when you talk to your Dr.

    Also what would you do if I were to come to you and offer you ten, twenty, thirty or even fifty thousand dollars just to sign your name to a paper that some one else had written, with NO repercussions to you , What would you do? Also the next time you see your Dr ask him or her just exactly how much he or she gets for the chicken scratches on that little peace of paper, and if they tell you that they get nothing then they are lying, pure and simple. The more that they script the high end drugs the better they do, somewhere down the line they always get the kickbacks, then ask for the generic brand of drug which will do the exact. same thing and watch their noses curl.

    But what the hell do I know? I’m just a lowly retired Biologist and shouldn’t be listened to.