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Pharmaceutical Corruption News Stories

Below are key excerpts of revealing news articles on pharmaceutical industry corruption from reliable news media sources. If any link fails to function, a paywall blocks full access, or the article is no longer available, try these digital tools.

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Oxford AstraZeneca Covid jab was ‘defective’, claims landmark legal case
2023-11-08, The Telegraph (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
Posted: 2023-11-12 19:44:36
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2023/11/08/oxford-astrazeneca-covid-jab-defe...

The Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine has been branded “defective” in a multi-million pound landmark legal action that will suggest claims over its efficacy were “vastly overstated”. The pharmaceutical giant is being sued in the High Court in a test case by Jamie Scott, a father-of-two who suffered a significant permanent brain injury that has left him unable to work as a result of a blood clot after receiving the jab in April 2021. A second claim is being brought by the widower and two young children of 35-year-old Alpa Tailor, who died after having the jab made by AstraZeneca. The test cases could pave the way for as many as 80 damages claims worth an estimated £80 million over a new condition known as Vaccine-induced Immune Thrombocytopenia and Thrombosis (VITT) that was identified by specialists in the wake of the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine rollout. In the months following the rollout, the potential serious side effect of the AstraZeneca jab was identified by scientists. Following this, it was recommended it no longer be given to the under-40s in the UK because the risk of receiving the jab outweighed the harm posed by Covid. Official figures ... show at least 81 deaths in the UK are suspected to have been linked to the adverse reaction that caused clotting in people who also had low blood platelets. Victims and their lawyers question the Government’s monitoring of the rollout and point out that ... Germany suspended the vaccine’s use for the under 60s at the end of March 2021.

Note: In the US, when current and former FDA advisers and academics asked the FDA to improve COVID vaccine labeling given the risk of severe vaccine injuries, the agency denied almost every single request. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on coronavirus vaccines from reliable major media sources.


FDA Defends COVID Vaccine Against Smoking Gun Claims
2023-11-01, Newsweek
Posted: 2023-11-12 19:39:45
https://www.newsweek.com/fda-defends-covid-vaccine-against-smoking-gun-claims...

Anti-vaccine advocates have recently made allegations against the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine in hopes that the charges may hurt the drug manufacturer. In a series of posts on X (formerly Twitter), Steve Kirsch expressed concern over reports that Pfizer's vaccine was contaminated, saying that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) "is now at a crossroads." "Either they admit that they knew about the plasma contamination, and failed to disclose that to the public and to the outside committees, or they can claim that they didn't know about it in which case Pfizer is liable. But we have the Pfizer documents that were given to the FDA so we know what the FDA got," Kirsch wrote. "I seriously doubt there's any disclosure of SV40 contamination. That means we have an adulterated vaccine and the FDA has to remove it from the market until the adulteration is fixed. If the FDA doesn't do that, they should face criminal prosecution for endangering the public, and not following the law." (SV40 refers to simian virus 40.) In his posts, Kirsch also references an incident in Michigan where a judge ruled that the manufacturer of the COVID-19 medication Remdesivir was no longer protected by the federal Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness (PREP) Act after a man filed a lawsuit against the manufacturer. The man filed the suit after suffering strokes and an amputation following treatment with the drug, Remdesivir, which was contaminated with glass particles.

Note: While the data is still being uncovered, read an in-depth, scientific investigation into vaccine contamination, including concerns that Pfizer hid this contamination from regulators. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on coronavirus vaccines from reliable major media sources.


As Ozempic use grows, so do reports of possible mental health side effects
2023-09-21, NPR
Posted: 2023-11-07 16:11:43
https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2023/09/21/1200201186/as-ozempic-us...

Nearly three months into taking Ozempic for diabetes, Jenny Kent had already lost 12 pounds, and her blood sugar numbers were looking better than they had in a while. Ozempic, the injectable drug approved for Type 2 diabetes, has taken the world by storm. Despite not being approved by the Food and Drug Administration for weight loss, Ozempic has prompted people on TikTok and Instagram to speculate about which stars have used it to shed pounds seemingly overnight. But for Kent something else changed after she started taking Ozempic. "I was just constantly in a state of being overwhelmed," says Kent. "So my response to that was just I was just crying all the time. Sobbing, crying ... I still didn't put it together, so I kept ... taking my injections." She's one of many people taking Ozempic and related drugs who describe mental health problems. But that side effect isn't mentioned in Ozempic's instructions for use, or drug label. In July, the European Medicines Agency said that it was looking into the risk of thoughts of self-harm and suicidal thoughts with the use of Ozempic and similar drugs. The FDA hasn't taken that step. NPR analyzed the FDA's adverse event reporting system, or FAERS, and learned that the agency has received 489 reports of patients experiencing anxiety, depression or suicidal thoughts while taking semaglutide drugs, including Ozempic, Wegovy and Rybelsus. In 96 of those reports, the patient had suicidal thoughts. Five of them died.

Note: A deeper investigation explores the concerning scope of health issues related to weight-loss drug side effects. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Big Pharma corruption from reliable major media sources.


Ozempic, Mounjaro manufacturers testing weight loss drugs for kids
2023-10-22, MSN News
Posted: 2023-11-07 16:10:04
https://www.msn.com/en-us/health/other/ozempic-mounjaro-manufacturers-testing...

Companies that make popular weight loss shots like Ozempic and Mounjaro are starting to test a version for kids as young as six years old who suffer from obesity. Pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly signaled its plans to start clinical trials with Mounjaro for kids ages 6-11, over the weekend. Novo Nordisk, the company that makes Ozempic, reported it is in phase three of testing Saxenda, a version of its drug for children ages 6-12. The rates of obesity for children in the U.S. have tripled since the 1980s, affecting close to 15 million children nationwide, according to the CDC. This is nearly one in five kids. “It’s unlikely it’s going to do much if you just give them the medication. You need to instill all these behavior changes, lifestyle changes, talk about the diet, nutrition consults, the exercise,” said pediatrician Dr. Alison Mitzner. The concern for possible long-term impacts and side effects is one nutritionist Carrie Lupoli echoes. Both drug companies were sued earlier this year after a plaintiff said she suffered stomach paralysis. “It’s scary to me that we are going down that path instead of actually working on the root cause because we know weight gain is a symptom of health and hormones,” Lupoli said. CDC data shows kids may have gained weight twice as fast during the pandemic. Earlier this year, the American Academy of Pediatrics came out with new guidance that includes medication and surgery as suggestions for patients 12 and up suffering from obesity.

Note: The pharmaceutical companies behind these weight loss drugs are raking it in despite significant efficacy and safety concerns. Sales of Ozempic generated revenue of $3.2 billion in the second quarter (up from $2.1 billion during the same period in 2022) and Mounjaro generated $980 million in sales for the company during the second quarter (a 72% increase compared to the first quarter). For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Big Pharma corruption from reliable major media sources.


Americans Are Fools for Pharma
2023-10-24, The DisInformation Chronicle on Substack
Posted: 2023-11-07 16:06:44
https://disinformationchronicle.substack.com/p/americans-are-fools-for-pharma

While I was out of town on business, I got a call from my dad who told me my husband Woody had been found hanging—dead at age 37. Woody wasn’t depressed and he hadn’t had a history of depression nor any other mental illness. His doctor had prescribed the antidepressant Zoloft to take the edge off. In the following weeks, I started to investigate, to try and understand why my perfectly normal husband had decided to end his life. The only thing that made sense ... Zoloft. Figuring out Zoloft’s dangers completely altered my life’s trajectory, absorbing years of my time. Today, I sit on one of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advisory committees that reviews new drugs coming to market. I initially thought that what I was learning about Zoloft was just an isolated issue with antidepressants. But I soon realized it was part of a much bigger, systemic problem with our nation’s drug safety system. The pharmaceutical industry is driven by commercial interests, not public health, and this problem is compounded by a lack of transparency, conflicts of interests, manipulation of clinical trials, and undue corporate influence across the government. Marketing companies ghostwrite pharmaceutical studies for academics who sometimes barely read the papers that get submitted to medical journals, and drug makers then cite these ghostwritten studies as peer-reviewed proof of their products’ safety and efficacy. The revolving door between Big Pharma and the FDA spins faster than the one between the Pentagon and the defense industry.

Note: This guest essay is written by Kim Witczak, a globally renowned advocate for pharmaceutical drug safety and FDA reform. Antidepressants have been found to increase the risk of suicide in some patients. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health and Big Pharma corruption from reliable major media sources.


Eighty Percent of the Population Will Get Treated for Mental Illness in their Lifetime—and They’re Worse Off Afterward
2023-10-23, Mad in America
Posted: 2023-11-07 16:05:13
https://www.madinamerica.com/2023/10/eighty-percent-of-the-population-will-ge...

A new study published in JAMA Psychiatry finds that almost everyone will be treated for mental illness at some point in their lives and that their lives are worse in many ways after receiving diagnosis and treatment. About 80% of the population will be hospitalized or receive psychiatric drugs. After treatment, they are more likely to end up poor, unemployed, and receiving disability benefits, and they have worsening social connections. According to the researchers, the likelihood of getting prescribed psychiatric drugs during your lifetime was 82.6% (87.5% for women and 76.7% for men). The likelihood of being hospitalized for mental illness was 29.0% (31.8% for women and 26.1% for men). On average, the 80% who were treated for mental illness were already struggling before treatment. But after treatment, things only got worse. After treatment, “individuals with any mental health disorder were more likely to experience new socioeconomic difficulties, compared with control individuals from the general population,” the researchers write. “During follow-up, they were more likely to become unemployed or receive a disability benefit, to earn lower income, to be living alone, and to be unmarried.” There is copious evidence that antidepressant use leads to worse outcomes in the long term, even after controlling for the severity of depression and other factors. The adverse effects of the drugs lead to worse health outcomes for those taking them, and withdrawal symptoms prevent people from being able to discontinue.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Health Information Center.


Law enforcement eyes opioid settlement cash for squad cars and body scanners
2023-10-20, NPR
Posted: 2023-10-29 17:27:34
https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2023/10/20/1206326239/law-enforceme...

Policing expenses mount quickly: $18,000 for technology to unlock cellphones in Southington, Conn.; $2,900 for surveillance cameras and to train officers and canines in New Lexington, Ohio. And in other communities around the country, hundreds of thousands for vehicles, body scanners, and other equipment. State and local governments are turning to a new means to pay those bills: opioid settlement cash. This money — totaling more than $50 billion across 18 years — comes from national settlements with more than a dozen companies that made, sold, or distributed opioid painkillers, including Johnson & Johnson, AmerisourceBergen, and Walmart, which were accused of fueling the epidemic that addicted and killed millions. In August, more than 200 researchers and clinicians delivered a call to action to government officials in charge of opioid settlement funds. "More policing is not the answer to the overdose crisis," they wrote. Years of research suggests law enforcement and criminal justice initiatives have exacerbated the problem. "Police activity is actually causing the very harms that police activity is supposed to be stemming," says Jennifer Carroll, an author of that study and an addiction policy researcher. In Louisiana ... 80% of settlement dollars are flowing to parish governments and 20% to sheriffs' departments. Over the lifetime of the settlements, sheriffs' offices in the state will receive more than $65 million — the largest direct allocation to law enforcement nationwide. And they do not have to account for how they spend it.

Note: Explore past news articles we've summarized on opioids, a crisis fueled by US drug companies and captured government agencies. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on police corruption from reliable major media sources.


Deadly pharmacy errors mount as companies push quotas, limit staff: ‘I am a danger to the public’
2023-09-05, New York Post
Posted: 2023-10-16 01:35:37
https://nypost.com/2023/09/05/deadly-pharmacy-errors-are-mounting-a-danger-to...

Every year, up to 9,000 people die in the US as a result of a prescription medication error. That figure doesn’t include the hundreds of thousands of patients who suffer adverse effects from taking the wrong medication or taking meds in the wrong way. Now, an investigative report from the Los Angeles Times reveals that pharmacies make an estimated 5 million errors every year in California alone, according to the state’s Board of Pharmacy. But even as pharmacy errors mount across the US, pharmaceutical lobbyists are pushing to keep reports of errors hidden from officials and the public. The problem, according to pharmacists and others, is most acute at big retail pharmacy chains such as CVS and Walgreens, where overworked staff are pushed to the limit to meet sales quotas, despite desperate staffing shortages. To combat the rising tide of pharmacy errors, the California State Board of Pharmacy is sponsoring a bill that would require pharmacies to report every error to a third party outside the government. The bill would also allow the pharmacist responsible for the store to increase staffing if the workload has become too overwhelming to keep patients safe. But the bill is opposed by the California Community Pharmacy Coalition, a lobbying group representing retail pharmacies, including the big chains. The coalition believes pharmacy staffing requirements are too strict and it does not want the pharmacy board to have access to the error reports.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and Big Pharma profiteering from reliable major media sources.


Popular ‘Benzo’ drugs linked to suicide, brain damage — even if you stop taking them: study
2023-06-30, New York Post
Posted: 2023-10-16 01:34:07
https://nypost.com/2023/06/30/popular-benzo-drugs-linked-to-suicide-brain-dam...

Over 30 million Americans a year use benzodiazepines, or “benzos,” including Xanax, Valium, Ativan and Klonopin. Benzodiazepines are prescribed to treat anxiety disorders, insomnia, muscle spasms, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, seizures and epilepsy. But this widely used class of drugs is linked to severe side effects and life impacts that can last for years — even after people have stopped taking the drugs — a new study finds. “Patients have been reporting long-term effects from benzodiazepines for over 60 years. I am one of those patients,” Dr. Christy Huff, a cardiologist and co-author of the study, said in a news release. The new research, published in PLOS One, includes a lengthy list of side effects that a majority of benzo users experienced more than a year after they stopped taking the drugs. Those long-lasting symptoms include low energy, difficulty focusing, memory loss, anxiety, insomnia, sensitivity to light and sounds, digestive problems, symptoms triggered by food and drink, muscle weakness and body pain. Alarmingly, users also struggled with severe life impacts: 54.7% reported suicide attempts or suicidal thoughts, for example. Health experts noted numerous other problems with benzos, including an increased risk of suicide and dependence on the drug, among other adverse side effects. Withdrawal from benzos can produce troubling symptoms as soon as within 24 hours, and these adverse effects can last for months.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Big Pharma corruption from reliable major media sources.


The FDA is now fast-tracking new drug approvals — why that’s so worrying
2023-08-24, New York Post
Posted: 2023-10-16 01:32:35
https://nypost.com/2023/08/24/fda-fast-tracking-approval-of-new-drugs-fewer-t...

The Food and Drug Administration is now regularly approving new drugs after just one or two clinical trials — a significant departure from the more rigorous vetting process the agency was previously known for, newly published research reveals. Furthermore, the authors say, there’s now less information available to the public about the results of all trials. Of the 37 drugs approved by the FDA last year, 24 (about 65%) were approved based on just one study, according to a paper published in JAMA Network Open. Only four of those 37 drugs, or about 11%, reported three or more studies before approval. Another piece of new research, published in Health Affairs Scholar, found that of the 46 new drugs approved in 2017, 19 of them (41%) were approved based on a single study — though the drugmakers conducted an average of 2.2 studies per drug, including 165 studies for the popular weight-loss drug Ozempic. The ease with which novel drugs are approved is in part the result of the 21st Century Cures Act, passed in 2016 to speed the approval of new medicines so patients could gain access to life-saving treatments. As part of that law, the FDA relaxed some standards to allow treatments for priority health conditions such as cancer to be approved with fewer supporting studies, and with less emphasis on randomized clinical trials. But in the years following the passage of the 21st Century Cures Act, the FDA has faced a firestorm of criticism over the approval process for some new drugs.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and Big Pharma profiteering from reliable major media sources.


J&J unit, P&G, Walgreens misled consumers about decongestants, lawsuits say
2023-09-15, Reuters
Posted: 2023-10-16 01:28:08
https://www.reuters.com/legal/jj-pg-sued-after-fda-panel-ruling-cold-medicine...

Procter & Gamble (PG.N), Walgreens (WBA.O) and Johnson & Johnson's (JNJ.N) former consumer business are among several companies accused in lawsuits of deceiving consumers about cold medicines containing an ingredient that a unanimous U.S. Food and Drug Administration advisory panel declared ineffective. Proposed class actions were filed on Wednesday and Thursday, after the panel reviewed several studies and concluded this week that the ingredient phenylephrine marketed as a decongestant was essentially no better than a placebo. According to an agency presentation, about 242 million products with phenylephrine were sold in the United States last year, generating $1.76 billion of sales and accounting for about four-fifths of the market for oral decongestants. The first lawsuit appeared to have been filed in Pensacola, Florida, federal court. It said Johnson & Johnson Consumer and Procter & Gamble should have known by 2018 that their marketing claims about products with phenylephrine were "false and deceptive." That year was when new FDA guidance for evaluating symptoms related to nasal congestion demonstrated that earlier data about phenylephrine's effectiveness could no longer be relied upon, the complaint said. The plaintiff Steve Audelo, a Florida resident, said he bought Johnson & Johnson's Sudafed PE and Benadryl Allergy Plus, and Procter & Gamble's Vicks NyQuil, based on the companies' claims that the products worked.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health and corporate corruption from reliable major media sources.


The real data behind the new COVID vaccines the White House is pushing
2023-09-14, New York Post
Posted: 2023-10-03 15:24:35
https://nypost.com/2023/09/14/the-real-data-behind-the-new-covid-vaccines-the...

What if I told you one in 50 people who took a new medication had a “medically attended adverse event” and the manufacturer refused to disclose what exactly the complication was — would you take it? And what if the theoretical benefit was only transient, lasting about three months, after which your susceptibility goes back to baseline? And what if we told you the Food and Drug Administration cleared it without any human-outcomes data. That’s what we know about the new COVID vaccine the Biden administration is firmly recommending. COVID vaccines are very different from flu vaccines. COVID vaccines have higher complication rates, including severe and life-threatening cardiac reactions. Flu shots have a 50-plus-year safety record whereas COVID vaccines have been associated with a serious adverse event rate of one in 5,000 doses, according to a German study by the Paul-Ehrlich-Institut. Another study, published last year in the medical journal Vaccine, estimated the rate of serious adverse events to be as high as one in 556 COVID vaccine recipients. And for young people, the incidence of myocarditis is six to 28 times higher after the vaccine than after infection, even for females, according to a 2022 JAMA Cardiology study. That’s one of the reasons a study that we and several national colleagues published last year found that college booster mandates appear to have resulted in a net public health harm.

Note: The above was written by Marty Makary, MD, a professor at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. Anecdotals is a powerful documentary that follows the lives of many people who stepped up to get vaccinated for themselves or the greater good, yet whose lives changed drastically as a result. Instead of having their stories of vaccine injuries heard and seen, they were discredited and abandoned by the medical system and our media systems.


Revolving door redux: The DEA’s recently departed No. 2 returns to a Big Pharma consulting firm
2023-09-20, Associated Press
Posted: 2023-09-24 16:59:56
https://apnews.com/article/dea-opioids-fentanyl-cocaine-drugs-pharmaceutical-...

Louis Milione retired from the DEA a second time this summer amid reporting by The Associated Press on potential conflicts caused by his prior consulting for the pharmaceutical industry. Less than three months later, Milione again landed a plum job at Guidepost Solutions, a New York-based firm hired by some of the same companies he had been tasked with regulating when he returned to the DEA in 2021. Milione had spent four years at Guidepost prior to his return, leveraging his extensive experience and contacts from a 21-year DEA career. Milione is the most senior of a slew of DEA officials to have traded their badge and gun for a globe-trotting consulting job. His career stands out for two cycles through the revolving door between government and industry, raising questions about the potential impact on the DEA’s mission to police drug companies blamed for tens of thousands of American overdose deaths. Milione’s private-sector clientele also included Morris & Dickson Co., the nation’s fourth-largest wholesale drug distributor, as it tried to stave off DEA sanctions for disregarding thousands of suspicious, high-volume orders. The DEA allowed the company to continue shipping drugs for nearly four years after a judge recommended its license be revoked for “cavalier disregard” of rules aimed at preventing opioid abuse. It was not until AP began asking questions this spring that the DEA moved to finally strip the Shreveport, Louisiana-based company of its license to distribute highly addictive painkillers.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in government and in the pharmaceutical industry from reliable major media sources.


Internal Pharma Documents Reveal Strategies Used to Corrupt the Medical Field
2023-05-09, Mad in America
Posted: 2023-09-10 20:35:02
https://www.madinamerica.com/2023/05/internal-pharma-documents-reveals-strate...

A recent Cochrane Evidence Synthesis and Methods article examines internal pharma industry documents, primarily obtained through litigation. The study finds that the pharmaceutical industry employs numerous ghost management strategies to corrupt research, circumvent and undermine regulations, manipulate consumers, and protect its interests. The authors write: “The scientific literature using internal documents confirmed widespread corporate influence in the pharmaceutical sector. While the academic literature used internal documents related to only a handful of products, our research results, based on ghostmanagement categories, demonstrate the extent of corporate influence in every interstice of pharmaceutical markets, particularly in clinical research and clinical practice.” Analysis of the articles revealed several common ghost management strategies the pharmaceutical industry utilizes. Ghost management is a system of behind-the-scenes processes by which the industry corrupts researchers, clinicians, and regulatory agencies with gifts and bribes and determines what research will be funded, what scientific journals can publish, and how physicians, etc., will present their product. The present research reveals eight broad categories of ghost management: scientific capture, professional capture, regulatory capture, media capture, market capture, technological capture, civil society capture, and others. Scientific capture was the most commonly analyzed ghost management strategy.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Big Pharma corruption from reliable major media sources.


'I'm not a doctor just FYI': the influencers paid to hawk drugs on TikTok
2023-03-17, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
Posted: 2023-07-10 16:44:46
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2023/mar/17/patient-influencers-tiktok-in...

A young TikTok user has long, wavy hair. She's slim and wants you to know exactly why: she's using Wegovy, a prescription drug originally developed to treat diabetes that's become a popular drug for weight loss. In one clip, she picks up the medication from a pharmacy ... then demonstrates in a following clip how she injects it into her leg. She's what's called a patient influencer. They have no medical training and claim that they're simply sharing their personal experiences with their TikTok and Instagram followers. But in this ... unregulated arena, it's gotten harder to tell when influencing crosses legal and ethical lines. Many patient influencers offer prescription drug advice to their followers without always revealing their relationships with drug companies, according to Erin Willis ... who authored a study about patient influencers. A patient influencer can expect to earn anywhere from "the low hundreds to a few thousand dollars" per social media post. Part of what makes patient influencers effective is that they often push messaging further than what would be allowed on media like TV, where ads are far more closely scrutinized by regulators like the FDA and Federal Trade Commission. Willis calls patient influencing "an interactive form of advertising" that's "difficult to regulate, if it's been regulated at all". Studies find [direct-to-consumer] ads lead to doctors prescribing them more – driving the market for these ads to nearly $7bn last year, industry statistics show.

Note: This controversial marketing tactic is only legal in the United States and New Zealand. Read more about how these tactics are quickly becoming the "wild west of pharma advertising," especially when the FDA’s social media guidance hasn’t been updated since 2014. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Big Pharma corruption from reliable major media sources.


Government Contracts With COVID Vaccine Makers Let Federal Agencies Bypass Normal Regulatory Process, FOIA Documents Show
2023-06-30, The Defender
Posted: 2023-07-10 16:28:49
https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/hhs-barda-covid-vaccine-makers-by...

A little-known federal agency called BARDA dedicated to countering "health security threats" was responsible for conducting the quality review of every COVID-19 vaccine dose administered in the U.S., Sasha Latypova reported on her Substack. But BARDA, the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, which has a "militarized" purpose according to Latypova, is not subject to the same regulations as typical pharmaceutical manufacturers, distributors or regulatory agencies. "The public was told these vaccines are made by Pfizer and Moderna and rigorously approved by the FDA," [said Latypova]. That ... would mean that the "consumer protections we expect from pharmaceutical products, medical devices and even food ... we expect them to be in place." But in fact, countermeasures contracts made available through Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests ... and U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission disclosures show the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) and BARDA contracts with the pharmaceutical companies were structured such that these protections weren't required. The contracts also specified that manufacturers and federal agencies were protected by the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness (PREP) Act, which shields "covered persons" – such as pharmaceutical companies, or the DOD/BARDA – from liability for injuries sustained from "countermeasures," such as vaccines ... administered during a public health emergency.

Note: Sasha Latypova is a former pharmaceutical industry executive who now specializes in uncovering fraud in pharmaceutical research, development, and manufacturing. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and coronavirus vaccines from reliable major media sources.


Merck accused of downplaying early evidence of drug's brain impact
2023-06-26, Reuters
Posted: 2023-07-03 15:52:52
https://www.reuters.com/business/healthcare-pharmaceuticals/merck-accused-dow...

An early magazine advertisement for Merck's breakthrough asthma and allergy medicine, Singulair, featured a happy child, hanging upside-down from a tree. Asthmatic kids could now breathe easier, the text assured, and side effects were "usually mild" and "similar to a sugar pill." When the drug launched in 1998, its label said the drug's distribution in the brain was "minimal," with no mention of psychiatric side effects. Merck's early safety claims later faced intense scrutiny amid reports over two decades that patients, including many children, had died by suicide or experienced neuropsychiatric problems after taking the drug. The FDA in 2020 ordered its most serious warning, known as a "black box," on Singulair's label. And Merck now faces a raft of lawsuits alleging it knew from its early research that the drug could impact the brain and that it minimized the potential for psychiatric problems in statements to regulators. The lawsuits cite the research of Julia Marschallinger, a cell biologist who has studied the drug along with colleagues at the Institute of Molecular Regenerative Medicine in Austria. That team found in 2015 that the drug's distribution into the brain was more significant than its label described. In its original patent for Singulair, Merck cited other applications for the drug, beyond asthma and allergies, including as a treatment for "cerebral spasm," a neurological condition. Lawsuits filed against Merck cite this 1996 patent as evidence of Merck's knowledge of the drug's potential brain impacts.

Note: Read more about Singulair and its dangers to human health, along with the tremendous financial conflicts of interests resulting in the FDA protecting the pharmaceutical industry first, and the health of the people second. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on pharmaceutical industry corruption from reliable major media sources.


A son died, his parents tried to sue. How U.S. courts protect Big Pharma
2023-06-26, Reuters
Posted: 2023-07-03 15:50:33
https://www.reuters.com/investigates/special-report/usa-lawsuits-merck-singul...

Nicholas England, a healthy 22-year-old from Virginia, shot himself in the head in 2017, less than two weeks after he started taking an allergy medicine that had been linked for years to episodes of depression and suicidal thinking. His parents soon started exploring a lawsuit against Merck, the developer of the blockbuster asthma and allergy drug, Singulair. Nicholas had no history of mental-health problems, they said. The Englands were shocked to learn from legal advisers that they had no case. Like countless other potential plaintiffs, they had run into one of Corporate America's most effective liability shields: the legal doctrine of preemption, the principle that federal law supersedes state law. Armed with U.S. Supreme Court rulings on preemption starting in the 1990s, companies increasingly argue that federally regulated products or services should be immune from lawsuits alleging state-law violations. State laws historically have provided the legal basis for some of the most common lawsuits against U.S. companies alleging injuries, deaths or illnesses caused by negligence or defective products. Pending lawsuits against Merck allege that the company's own early research indicated the drug could impact the brain but that Merck downplayed any risks in statements to regulators. It wasn't until 2020 that the FDA slapped its most serious warning, called a "black box," on the drug's label. By that time, the FDA had received more than 80 reports of suicides in people taking the medicine.

Note: Read more about Singulair and its dangers to human health, along with the tremendous financial conflicts of interests resulting in the FDA protecting the pharmaceutical industry first, and the health of the people second. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on pharmaceutical industry corruption from reliable major media sources.


Antidepressants increase the risk of suicide for some patients, scientists warn
2023-04-17, The Telegraph (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
Posted: 2023-06-18 22:51:38
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2023/04/17/antidepressants-suicide-drugs-pro...

Antidepressants raise the risk of suicide while also giving people the means to kill themselves, scientists have warned, after discovering thousands of inquests linked to the drugs. Psychologists at the University of East London (UEL) analysed media reports of nearly 8,000 coroners' inquests in England and Wales between 2003 and 2020, in which antidepressants were mentioned. They found the drugs were linked to 2,718 cases of hanging and 2,329 overdoses, of which 933 people had overdosed on antidepressants themselves. A further 2,083 had been struck by a train, tube, lorry or other vehicle, had jumped or fallen to their death, drowned, shot themselves, or been involved in a fire or electrocution. Study author Dr John Read ... said: "Not only do antidepressants not reduce suicidality, but they also actually increase it for many, and for some they provide the mechanism for killing oneself." The research, ... concluded: "If the goal is to prevent suicide then clearly they are not working for thousands of people." Around one in six of the adult population takes antidepressants each year. In 2018, Prof Read surveyed nearly 1,500 people taking antidepressants and found that 50 per cent reported suicidal thoughts after starting the drugs. Recent studies have also called into question the benefits of antidepressants. Last year, University College London (UCL) concluded that depression is not caused by a chemical imbalance of serotonin and argued that life events were a larger factor.

Note: Antidepressants are some of the most commonly prescribed medications, yet their significant risks are often withheld from public debate. Furthermore, an in-depth investigation reveals the glaring conflicts of interest and financial ties to corporate drugmakers that are behind many studies marketing clinical antidepressants as safe. 


Less Than a Third of Heavily Advertised Drugs have 'High Therapeutic Value': Study as reported by US News and World Report
2023-01-18, US News & World Report
Posted: 2023-05-22 01:11:57
https://www.usnews.com/news/health-news/articles/2023-01-18/less-than-a-third...

Television ads for drugs are filled with glowing images of people living their best lives, all thanks to that new med they've been prescribed. But drugs being touted on TV often have little to no benefit compared to other treatments, a new study published online Jan. 13 in JAMA Network Open finds. Fewer than one-third of drugs commonly advertised in the United States are highly rated first-line therapies, based on regulatory reviews from three different health agencies, the researchers said. Further, medications categorized as "low benefit" accounted for nearly $16 billion of the $22 billion in TV ad spending during the six-year study period, the results showed. "Proponents of direct-to-consumer pharmaceutical advertising often argue that these ads have high public health value by encouraging uptake of the most therapeutically beneficial therapies. Our study pushes back against this argument," said lead researcher Neeraj Patel. "The U.S. is one of only two high-income countries in the world that widely permits direct-to-consumer advertising of prescription drugs," Patel said. "And there's been a ton of empirical research over the past two decades that has suggested that this type of advertising can be misleading, lead to inappropriate prescribing, and inflate health care costs." In the meantime, people should have frank discussions with their doctor about any drug that's caught their eye on TV, focusing on the real risks and benefits, Patel said.

Note: This profoundly eye-opening interview of a top cardiologist reveals without doubt how big Pharma has corrupted science and greatly damaged public health. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on big Pharma corruption from reliable major media sources.


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