Health News Stories
Excerpts of Key Health News Stories in Major Media


Below are many highly revealing excerpts of important health news stories reported in the major media that suggest a major cover-up. Links are provided to the full stories on their mainstream media websites. If any link fails to function, read this webpage. These health news stories are listed by date posted to this webpage. You can explore the same articles listed by order of importance or by article date. By choosing to educate ourselves on these important issues and to spread the word, we can and will build a brighter future.


Health News stories


Note: This comprehensive list of health news stories is usually updated once a week. Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news stories on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.

Morgellons Mystery: No Medical Explanation for ‘Crawling Skin’ Disease
2012-01-26, Time Magazine
Posted: 2012-01-31 15:27:50
http://healthland.time.com/2012/01/26/morgellons-mystery-no-medical-explanati...

The symptoms of the bizarre illness known as Morgellons are enough to make your skin crawl. For patients who say they are suffering from the condition, that sensation is all too real. Sufferers report feeling that bugs are crawling all over their skin or just under it. They have fatigue and painful sores. They also say that they’ve pulled “fibers” and other solid materials ... through their skin, leaving lesions, according to new research by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The new study — a $600,000 project launched in 2008 in response to a massive swell of interest and inquiries about the condition from lawmakers and patients — sought to determine how common Morgellons is. The new findings suggest that their symptoms may exist only in their minds. CDC researchers took skin biopsies and urine and blood samples to look for infectious diseases, including bacteria or fungus, that could explain the illness. There were none. They looked for environmental causes too, and couldn’t find any. Although the CDC report concluded that no medical explanation for Morgellons can be found, the paper “confirms what anybody who has ever seen a patient with this knows, which is that these patients are suffering greatly and their suffering is real; they shouldn’t be dismissed,” Jason Reichenberg, director of dermatology at the University of Texas Southwestern-Austin, told USA Today.

Note: Remember that the Feds also insisted Lyme disease was a delusion for many years. For a list of FAQ on Morgellons, click here. For more on this intriguing phenomenon, click here and here.




An end to GM crop development for Europe
2012-01-16, Financial Times
Posted: 2012-01-27 10:44:24
http://www.ft.com/cms/s/2/6e074ee4-403e-11e1-82f6-00144feab49a.html#axzz1jkDc...

BASF, the German chemical giant, is to pull out of genetically modified [GM] plant development in Europe and relocate it to the US, where political and consumer resistance to GM crops is not so entrenched. The headquarters of BASF Plant Science will move from Limburgerhof in south-west Germany to Raleigh, North Carolina, and two smaller sites in Germany and Sweden will close. The company will transfer some GM crop development to the US but stop work on crops targeted at the European market – four varieties of potato and one of wheat. The decision ... signals the end of GM crop development for European farmers. Bayer, BASF’s German competitor, is working on GM cotton and rice in Ghent, Belgium – but not for European markets. “This is another nail in the coffin for genetically modified foods in Europe,” said Adrian Bebb of Friends of the Earth. BASF battled for some 13 years before the European Union approved in 2010 cultivation of its Amflora potato, which was intended to provide high-quality starch for industrial customers. However, German test sites had to be put under constant guard and activists still succeeded in destroying potato fields.

Note: The European public is well aware of the serious threats of GM food, yet the U.S. public, thanks to a controlled media, knows very little about this. For an excellent overview of the threats to health from genetically-modified foods, click here. For key articles from major media sources on these risks, click here.




Genetically engineered fish should be labeled
2012-01-19, San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco's leading newspaper)
Posted: 2012-01-27 10:43:08
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/01/18/EDOL1MQHV5.DTL

The first genetically engineered animal may be about to enter the food supply. This is also the moment for consumers to demand to know what's in their food. Consumers Union, the advocacy arm of Consumer Reports, believes that genetically engineered fish should not be allowed into the food supply unless it is proved safe for humans and the environment. At the very least, it should be labeled. One of the most critical issues before the [Food and Drug Administration] is the potential for genetically engineered fish to cause consumers to experience increased allergic responses. Unfortunately, the FDA allowed AquaBounty Technologies, the company developing the genetically engineered salmon, to declare that there was no increase in allergy-causing potential in their AquAdvantage salmon, based on data from just six engineered fish - even when the data suggested the genetic engineering process itself did increase the allergy-causing potential. Public opinion clearly and consistently supports mandatory labeling. Our polling found that 95 percent of the public wants labeling of genetically engineered animals, while other polls found that only 35 percent of the public said that they would be willing to eat seafood that has been genetically engineered. Consumers sent nearly 400,000 comments to the FDA demanding the agency reject genetically engineered salmon, or at least require that it be labeled.

Note: For an excellent overview of the threats to health from genetically-modified foods, click here.







Vermont governor signs single-payer health law
2011-05-26, CBS News
Posted: 2012-01-17 15:20:10
http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_162-20066495-503544.html

Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin ... signed into law a bill establishing a single-payer health care plan for the state, making Vermont the first state to do so. Shumlin lauded the legislation as an "economic and fiscal imperative" -- as well as a moral one. "This law recognizes an economic and fiscal imperative - that we must control the growth in health care costs that are putting families at economic risk and making it harder for small employers to do business," he said. "We have a moral imperative to fix this problem, with 47,000 Vermonters uninsured and another 150,000 underinsured and worried about how to afford keeping their families healthy." Vermont lawmakers passed the legislation in March by a 92-49 margin. At the time of its passage, Shumlin lauded the legislature for becoming "the first state in the country to make the first substantive step to deliver a health care system where health care will be a right and not a privilege." The legislation, when fully enacted, will guarantee every Vermont resident the right to enroll in a state-sponsored insurance plan, Green Mountain Care. The law is set to become operational in 2014.

Note: The huge medical and pharmaceutical industries in the U.S. have a vested interest in keeping health care private in order to maintain their massive profits. This may be why the important news above was hardly reported in the media. The rest of the industrialized world already knows that it is much cheaper for government to provide medical care than for the private sector. Yet the media, a major source of whose income comes from advertising by these industries, is quite biased against providing health care for all, unless it is done through a profitable private system.




F.D.A. Finds Short Supply of Attention Deficit Drugs
2012-01-01, New York Times
Posted: 2012-01-10 12:59:35
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/01/health/policy/fda-is-finding-attention-drug...

Medicines to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder are in such short supply that hundreds of patients complain daily to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) that they are unable to find a pharmacy with enough pills to fill their prescriptions. The shortages are a result of a troubled partnership between drug manufacturers and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), with companies trying to maximize their profits and drug-enforcement agents trying to minimize abuse by people. Shortages, particularly of cheaper generics, have become so endemic that some patients say they worry almost constantly about availability. The DEA sets manufacturing quotas that are designed to control supplies and thwart abuse. Every year, the DEA ... allots portions of the expected demand to various companies. How each manufacturer divides its quota among its own ADHD medicines — preparing some as high-priced brands and others as cheaper generics — is left up to the company. Officials at the FDA say the shortages are a result of overly strict quotas set by the DEA, which, for its part, questions whether there really are shortages or whether manufacturers are simply choosing to make more of the expensive pills than the generics, creating supply and demand imbalances.

Note: This curious story reveals an astonishing level of government manipulation of the manufacturing and availability of medications, and corporations appear to go along with it because it keeps profits high. For lots more on government and corportate corruption from reliable sources, click here and here.




Insurance profits soar after health care overhaul
2012-01-06, San Francisco Chronicle/Bloomberg News
Posted: 2012-01-10 12:54:46
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/01/05/BUUH1MLB31.DTL

Insurance companies spent millions of dollars trying to defeat the U.S. health care overhaul, saying it would raise costs and disrupt coverage. Instead, profit margins at the companies widened to levels not seen since before the recession, a Bloomberg Government study shows. Insurers led by WellPoint ... recorded their highest combined quarterly net income of the past decade after the law was signed in 2010, said Peter Gosselin, the study author. "The industry that was the loudest, most persistent critic of this law, the industry whose analysts and executives predicted it would suffer immensely because of the law, has thrived," Gosselin said. Health insurers contributed $86.2 million to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to oppose the law after Obama administration officials criticized the [corporations'] plans for enriching themselves by raising customer premiums. Companies are changing their business focus to gain from provisions in the law that will expand the size of Medicaid, the $401 billion government health plan for the poor.

Note: Is it surprising that health insurance companies are raking in big profits from the new health care legislation?




Alarm as Dutch lab creates highly contagious killer flu
2011-12-20, The Independent (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2011-12-27 12:15:57
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/alarm-as-dutch-lab-creates-highly-c...

A deadly strain of bird flu with the potential to infect and kill millions of people has been created in a laboratory by European scientists – who now want to publish full details of how they did it. Some scientists are questioning whether the research should ever have been undertaken in a university laboratory, instead of at a military facility. For the first time the researchers have been able to mutate the H5N1 strain of avian influenza so that it can be transmitted easily through the air in coughs and sneezes. Until now, it was thought that H5N1 bird flu could only be transmitted between humans via very close physical contact. Dutch scientists carried out the controversial research to discover how easy it was to genetically mutate H5N1 into a highly infectious "airborne" strain of human flu. They believe that the knowledge gained will be vital for the development of new vaccines and drugs. But critics say the scientists have endangered the world by creating a highly dangerous form of flu which could escape from the laboratory. The H5N1 strain of avian influenza has killed hundreds of millions of birds since it first appeared in 1996, but has so far infected only about 600 people who came into direct contact with infected poultry. What makes H5N1 so dangerous, though, is that it has killed about 60 per cent of those it has infected, making it one of the most lethal known forms of influenza in modern history – a deadliness moderated only by its inability (so far) to spread easily through airborne water droplets.

Note: For key major media reports revealing manipulation around both the avian and swine flus, click here. For solid evidence that Lyme disease originated in a secret government germ laboratory, click here.




Research on Lethal Bird Flu May Be Censored on Security Concern
2011-12-23, Bloomberg/Businessweek
Posted: 2011-12-27 12:14:20
http://www.businessweek.com/news/2011-12-23/research-on-lethal-bird-flu-may-b...

Scientists agreed not to publish certain details of research showing how lethal bird flu can be made contagious after a U.S. biosecurity panel asked that it be kept secret for security reasons. The study at Erasmus Medical Center in Rotterdam described the genetic changes needed to make the H5N1 avian influenza strain spread easily among ferrets and potentially people. The research is under review for publication in the journal Science. It was commissioned by the U.S. National Institutes of Health, the center said yesterday in a statement on its website. Knowing the genetic sequence of a deadly, infectious strain may enable the virus to be recreated through reverse engineering. The censorship was requested by the National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity, which was created in the aftermath of the 2001 anthrax attacks and advises the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The panel called for certain data to be kept secret after determining that the risks of publishing it outweigh the benefits, the Erasmus Medical Center said. “The researchers have reservations about this recommendation but will observe it,” the center said in the statement.

Note: For key major media reports revealing manipulation around both the avian and swine flus, click here. For solid evidence that Lyme disease originated in a secret government germ laboratory, click here.




Too late to contain killer flu science, say experts
2011-12-22, The Independent (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2011-12-27 12:12:34
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/too-late-to-contain-killer-flu-scie...

Attempts to censor details of controversial influenza experiments that created a highly infectious form of bird-flu virus are unlikely to stop the information from leaking out, according to scientists familiar with the research. The US Government has asked the editors of two scientific journals to refrain from publishing key parts of research on the H5N1 strain of bird-flu in order to prevent the information falling into the hands of terrorists intent on recreating the same flu strain for use as a bioweapon. However, scientists yesterday condemned the move. Some said that the decision comes too late because the information has already been shared widely among flu researchers, while others argued that the move could obstruct attempts to find new vaccines and drugs against an infectious form of human H5N1 if it appeared naturally. Professor Richard Ebright, a molecular biologist at Rutgers University in Piscataway, New Jersey, said that the research, which was funded by the US Government, should never have been done without first assessing the risks and benefits. “The work posed risks that outweighed benefits and that were clearly foreseeable before the work was performed,” Professor Ebright said. “The work should have been reviewed at the national or international level before being performed, and should have been restricted at a national or international level before being performed,” he said.

Note: For key major media reports revealing manipulation around both the avian and swine flus, click here. For solid evidence that Lyme disease originated in a secret government germ laboratory, click here.




Medical Journal Article: 14,000 U.S. Deaths Tied to Fukushima Reactor Disaster Fallout
2011-12-19, Sacramento Bee (the leading newspaper of California's capitol)
Posted: 2011-12-27 11:24:54
http://www.sacbee.com/2011/12/19/4132989/medical-journal-article-14000.html

An estimated 14,000 excess deaths in the United States are linked to the radioactive fallout from the disaster at the Fukushima nuclear reactors in Japan, according to a major new article in the December 2011 edition of the International Journal of Health Services. This is the first peer-reviewed study published in a medical journal documenting the health hazards of Fukushima. Authors Joseph Mangano and Janette Sherman note that their estimate of 14,000 excess U.S. deaths in the 14 weeks after the Fukushima meltdowns is comparable to the 16,500 excess deaths in the 17 weeks after the Chernobyl meltdown in 1986. The rise in reported deaths after Fukushima was largest among U.S. infants under age one. The 2010-2011 increase for infant deaths in the spring was 1.8 percent, compared to a decrease of 8.37 percent in the preceding 14 weeks. The IJHS article [is] available online ... at http://www.radiation.org. Internist and toxicologist Janette Sherman, MD, said: "Based on our continuing research, the actual death count [in the US] may be as high as 18,000, with influenza and pneumonia, which were up five-fold in the period in question as a cause of death. Deaths are seen across all ages, but we continue to find that infants are hardest hit because their tissues are rapidly multiplying, they have undeveloped immune systems, and the doses of radioisotopes are proportionally greater than for adults."

Note: To read the report (in pdf format) on excess mortality in the US already caused by the Fukushima meltdowns, click here.




How Independent Are Vaccine Defenders?
2008-07-25, CBS News
Posted: 2011-12-27 10:58:03
http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2008/07/25/cbsnews_investigates/main4296175.shtml

They're some of the most trusted voices in the defense of vaccine safety: the American Academy of Pediatrics, Every Child By Two, and pediatrician Dr. Paul Offit. But CBS News has found these three have something more in common - strong financial ties to the industry whose products they promote and defend. The vaccine industry gives millions to the Academy of Pediatrics for conferences, grants, medical education classes and even helped build their headquarters. The totals are kept secret, but public documents reveal bits and pieces. A $342,000 payment from Wyeth, maker of the pneumococcal vaccine - which makes $2 billion a year in sales. A $433,000 contribution from Merck, the same year the academy endorsed Merck's HPV vaccine - which made $1.5 billion a year in sales. Every Child By Two, a group that promotes early immunization for all children, admits the group takes money from the vaccine industry, too - but wouldn't tell us how much. Then there's Paul Offit, perhaps the most widely-quoted defender of vaccine safety. He's gone so far as to say babies can tolerate "10,000 vaccines at once." In fact, he's a vaccine industry insider. Offit holds in a $1.5 million dollar research chair at Children's Hospital, funded by Merck. He holds the patent on an anti-diarrhea vaccine he developed with Merck. And future royalties for the vaccine were just sold for $182 million cash.

Note: For an excellent report endorsed by dozens of respected doctors and nurses on the serious risks and dangers of vaccines, click here. For powerful evidence presented in major media articles that some vaccines are much more dangerous than the health industry will acknowledge, click here.




The mysterious lab off New York's shore
2004-04-02, CNN News
Posted: 2011-12-13 09:49:33
http://articles.cnn.com/2004-04-02/entertainment/lab.257_1_plum-island-lab-ge...

Oops. That's the word that comes to mind when reading Michael Carroll's thoroughly nerve-wracking book, "Lab 257: The Disturbing Story of the Government's Secret Germ Laboratory" ... about the federal germ facility on Plum Island. The island [is] home to some of the deadliest microbes festering on the planet. According to Carroll's book, the island -- and laboratory -- are also home to slipshod construction, poor safeguards, and lax security. "Lab 257" claims errors at the facility caused Lyme disease outbreaks and health problems for the local population -- claims disputed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which ran the facility until recently. Carroll [said] that the point of the book was to expose the potential hazards of a poorly run institution; he has nothing against better-run, more secure institutions. "You have to know how things interact, germs, bacteria, etc. You [just] don't need to create millions of them to know how to create them and make them more virulent. Like other government scientific facilities, it's had an aura of mystery: Plum Island earns a mention in "The Silence of the Lambs," and thriller writer Nelson DeMille set a novel there. Much of Carroll's research was done through interviews with nearby residents, as well as documents and reports. While the government was "cooperative at the outset," Carroll said ... he was later denied access to the facility. Carroll isn't the first to offer criticism. In 2002, after a power outage on the island, New York's WABC-TV did a story on whether containment procedures worked; several employees questioned the lab's safety. In 2003, the General Accounting Office listed security problems on the island, partially prompted by a whistleblower, Jim McCoy, who protested the management of a private concern.

Note: At the northernmost tip of Long Island, Plum island sits directly across from the town of Lyme, Conn., famous as the epicenter of the Lyme disease outbreak. For a powerful, multiple award-winning film showing shocking ignorance and even political corruption on the part of the medical community about the Lyme disease epidemic spreading across the US and even around the world, click here. It shows evidence that Lyme may be even the cause of many cases of ALS, Parkinson's, and Alzheimer's disease.




Plum I. Was Ready For Its Close-Up
2004-02-22, New York Times
Posted: 2011-12-13 09:47:51
http://www.nytimes.com/2004/02/22/nyregion/plum-i-was-ready-for-its-close-up....

Eight months have passed since the Department of Homeland Security took over the management of Plum Island from the Agriculture Department. Last week, Homeland Security officials offered a rare glimpse into this veiled and mysterious island. The timing of the tour for a dozen journalists coincided with the publication of a new book, ''Lab 257,'' by Michael Christopher Carroll, who argues that the Plum Island laboratories have an appalling safety record and can be linked to outbreaks of Lyme disease and West Nile virus. There have long been questions about the safety of Plum Island's operations, but they became more prevalent after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Mr. Carroll, a lawyer from Bellmore, writes that in 2002 American forces in Afghanistan found a file on the Plum Island laboratory in the home of a nuclear physicist identified by American officials as an associate of Osama bin Laden. Mr. Carroll, who calls the lab a ticking biological time bomb, describes low employee morale and a decline in security after a private company took over support functions in 1991. A report from the General Accounting Office released in October also criticized security at the center, saying that officials did not control access to dangerous pathogens that could be adapted for germ warfare. The report also cited door alarms and sensors that did not work ... and insufficient background checks. Plum Island and Homeland Security officials said there have been no direct terrorist threats against the lab, which studies foot-and-mouth disease and swine fever, among other diseases.

Note: At the northernmost tip of Long Island, Plum island sits directly across from the town of Lyme, Conn., famous as the epicenter of the Lyme disease outbreak. For a powerful, multiple award-winning film showing shocking ignorance and even political corruption on the part of the medical community about the Lyme disease epidemic spreading across the US and even around the world, click here. It shows evidence that Lyme may be even the cause of many cases of ALS, Parkinson's, and Alzheimer's disease.




Closely Guarded Secrets: Some Islands You Can't Get to Visit
1998-05-17, New York Times
Posted: 2011-12-13 09:46:02
http://www.nytimes.com/1998/05/17/nyregion/closely-guarded-secrets-some-islan...

Standing on the shores of the East End, you can see across the water to some of Long Island's greatest treasures, tantalizingly close yet forbiddingly inaccessible. They are off limits to the public. A mystique ... envelops the islands, and it is well earned. These islands -- Gardiners, Great Gull, Little Gull, Plum and Robins -- have been the setting of some of Long Island's most exciting historical chapters. Captain Kidd buried pirate treasure there. One Island woman was tried for witchcraft decades before Salem's trials. Another was so beautiful that she dazzled Washington society [and] married the President. And during the cold war, one island was used for secret research for a germ warfare attack on the Soviet Union. Plum Island ... is strictly controlled and it has the tightest security of all the islands. Unlike the secret germ warfare project in the 1950's, the first Federal project on Plum Island was quite open and ordinary. In 1826, the Government belatedly bought 3 of its 800 acres for a lighthouse. About the time of the Spanish-American War, the Government bought the rest of Plum and built Fort Terry as the headquarters for artillery batteries at Montauk. Federal officials ... converted the site to the Animal Disease Center in 1954. Since 1929, the country's only outbreak of the dreaded foot-and-mouth disease was in 1978, when it spread to animals outside the laboratory buildings. For decades, officials denied rumors of biological warfare experiments. But in 1993, Newsday unearthed previously classified documents on plans to disrupt the Soviet economy by spreading diseases to kill its pigs, cattle and horses.

Note: At the northernmost tip of Long Island, Plum island sits directly across from the town of Lyme, Conn., famous as the epicenter of the Lyme disease outbreak. This is one of many pieces of evidence suggesting that Lyme disease escaped from government labs there, as described in the book Lab 257: The Disturbing Story of the Government's Secret Germ Laboratory.




Plum Island Reports Disease Outbreak
2004-08-22, New York Times
Posted: 2011-12-13 09:44:18
http://www.nytimes.com/2004/08/22/nyregion/plum-island-reports-disease-outbre...

The Department of Homeland Security confirmed last week that the highly contagious foot-and-mouth virus had briefly spread within the Plum Island Animal Disease Center in two previously undisclosed incidents earlier this summer. The incidents and their belated public disclosure raised new questions about laboratory safety and communications to the public. In a letter to the laboratory director, Beth Lautner, dated Aug. 2, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton and Representative Timothy Bishop of Southampton said they were alarmed that the two incidents had taken place within a one-month span. A spokesman for the department, said the virus had remained within the laboratory's sealed biocontainment area. Asked why the department did not make a public announcement of the events, Mr. Tighe said: "It was within the laboratory environment, safely sealed in biocontainment. This was really an operational issue." Plum Island is the only location in the United States where research on the foot and mouth virus is legally permitted. In 1978, a foot and mouth outbreak among animals in pens outside the laboratory resulted in new procedures for keeping animals used in research inside the biocontainment area. Since taking over the laboratory just over a year ago, Homeland Security had been emphasizing its intention to keep the public informed. But department officials apparently did not heed calls from elected officials to disclose the two incidents sooner.

Note: At the northernmost tip of Long Island, Plum island sits directly across from the town of Lyme, Conn., famous as the epicenter of the Lyme disease outbreak. For a powerful, multiple award-winning film showing shocking ignorance and even political corruption on the part of the medical community about the Lyme disease epidemic spreading across the US and even around the world, click here. It shows evidence that Lyme may be even the cause of many cases of ALS, Parkinson's, and Alzheimer's disease.




Europe Bans Airport X-Ray Scanners that U.S. Still Uses
2011-11-17, Time Magazine
Posted: 2011-12-06 11:43:39
http://newsfeed.time.com/2011/11/17/europe-bans-airport-x-ray-scanners-that-u...

The European Commission adopted new rules Nov. 14 regarding X-ray, or backscatter, body scanners at all airports in Europe. A press release ordered members of the European Union to remove X-ray scanners from its airports to avoid risking “citizens’ health and safety.” The news [brings] into question the continued use of the very same X-ray scanners in U.S. airports. While the Transportation Security Administration also employs millimeter-wave scanners in U.S. airports, X-ray scanners are the ones that have received more criticism from public-safety advocates. While ... the amount of radiation exposure from X-ray machines is very low, several studies have shown that a small number of cancer cases could result from scanning millions of passengers every year. Some critics of the scanners say that any small amount of cancer is too much to tolerate. Although the TSA doesn’t show signs of budging on the use of X-ray scanners, Europe will instead use machines that rely on radio frequency waves, which have not been linked to cancer.

Note: For key reports from reliable sources on government and corporate threats to privacy, click here.




$3 billion settlement expected in GlaxoSmithKline drug-marketing probe
2011-11-03, Washington Post
Posted: 2011-12-06 11:41:47
http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/3billion-settlement-expected-i...

The British drugmaker Glaxo-SmithKline has tentatively agreed to pay the U.S. government $3 billion to settle multiple civil and criminal investigations, the largest settlement in the federal government’s recent crackdown on the pharmaceutical industry’s marketing practices. If the deal is finalized, it will mark the latest success in the federal government’s push to rein in drug companies’ promotional efforts. Of the 165 settlements reached between pharmaceutical companies and federal and state governments in the past two decades, about three-quarters took place between 2006 and 2010, according to a report by Public Citizen. Before the Glaxo agreement, the largest federal settlements took place in 2009: Pfizer paid $2.3 billion to settle federal investigations tied to the promotion of the anti-inflammatory drug Bextra and other drugs, and Eli Lilly & Co. paid $1.4 billion related to the marketing of the antipsychotic drug Zyprexa. Still, consumer advocates said the penalties are not enough. “The size of the penalties, although large, are not as large as the money [the drug companies] make and so they keep doing it over again,” said Sidney M. Wolfe, director of Public Citizen’s health research group. “The only way this is going to stop, or get reversed, is to greatly increase the size of the penalties or to start sending some of the executives to jail.”

Note: For insight into corruption in the pharmaceutical industry, click here.




Cost, need questioned in $433-million smallpox drug deal
2011-11-13, Los Angeles Times
Posted: 2011-11-22 10:16:46
http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-smallpox-20111113,0,4293...

Over the last year, the Obama administration has aggressively pushed a $433-million plan to buy an experimental smallpox drug, despite uncertainty over whether it is needed or will work. Senior officials have taken unusual steps to secure the contract for New York-based Siga Technologies Inc., whose controlling shareholder is billionaire Ronald O. Perelman, one of the world's richest men. Siga ... was the only company asked to submit a proposal. The contract calls for Siga to deliver 1.7 million doses of the drug for the nation's biodefense stockpile. The price of approximately $255 per dose is well above what the government's specialists had earlier said was reasonable. Once feared for its grotesque pustules and 30% death rate, smallpox was eradicated worldwide as of 1978 and is known to exist only in the locked freezers of a Russian scientific institute and the U.S. government. There is no credible evidence that any other country or a terrorist group possesses smallpox. If there were an attack, the government could draw on $1 billion worth of smallpox vaccine it already owns to inoculate the entire U.S. population and quickly treat people exposed to the virus. The vaccine, which costs the government $3 per dose, can reliably prevent death when given within four days of exposure.

Note: This is pure and blatant corruption to pad the pockers of Siga and those involved. For key reports from reliable sources on government corruption, click here. For more on corrupt drug companies, click here.




A matter of risk: Radiation, drinking water and deception
2011-09-03, KHOU-TV (Houston, TX)
Posted: 2011-11-22 10:07:26
http://www.khou.com/community/A-Matter-of-Risk--Radiation-Drinking-Water-and-...

For the past year the KHOU 11 News I-Team has been investigating the quality of the tap water in Texas. What they found was surprising: That many of the state's communities have a real problem with radioactive contamination in their local drinking water. However, the team also discovered that many of those consuming it didn't know they were also being exposed to a health risk. State scientists found some of Texas’ water could pose a 1 in 400 cancer risk. Neighborhoods across the state have been getting illegal amounts of a particularly damaging form of radiation, an exposure that some say was “covered-up” by Texas officials. Water with under-the-legal-limit amounts of radiation still might not be “safe”. Concentrated "bursts" of radiation could be released into your home ... from water pipes that become "a hidden risk" themselves.

Note: For key reports from reliable sources on government corruption, click here.




Needless Medical Tests Costly
2006-05-19, CBS News
Posted: 2011-11-22 09:59:13
http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/05/19/health/webmd/main1637144_page2.shtml

During your next routine medical checkup you have at least a 43 percent chance of undergoing an unnecessary medical test, a new study shows. It's not like you're getting something for nothing. If you're not having symptoms, and your doctor has no reason to suspect you have a problem, U.S. guidelines advise against giving you a routine urinalysis, electrocardiogram, or X-ray. "This has more harm than benefit," says Dan Merenstein, M.D., director of research in family medicine at Georgetown University. "The problem is, there are so many false-positive results from these tests. They lead to other things, like biopsies." The tests are meant to help doctors explore specific symptoms that are troubling patients or raise suspicion of a problem. If you're a healthy person who's just getting a routine checkup, there's only a tiny chance the tests will find disease. But Merenstein points out there's a good chance the tests will get a slightly abnormal finding. That means further costly tests — maybe even a painful biopsy — to show that you were, indeed, perfectly healthy to begin with. Aside from the costs in time and the potential for unnecessary suffering, these procedures add up to big money. Merenstein's modest estimate of the cost of just these three simple tests is $47 million to $194 million a year. And that doesn't include the cost of follow-up tests.

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