Throw a cat in a bin and get massive media coverage and public outrage. Kill 14 babies and our British press don't even give it a small column. We've lost our morals folks. Glaxo are a British company and their wrong-doings should be reported by the British press. With James Murdoch on the board at GSK and with Andrew Witty cupping the balls of the UK government with the threat of moving his business elsewhere, it's left, once again, to bloggers to report on this abhorrent misuse of human life.
What price a human life?
Well Judge Marcelo Aguinsky has fined GlaxoSmithKline 400,000 Argentinian Pesos [about £60,000] for its part in the 2007/08 vaccine trials conducted in Argentina where 14 children died. The charges, writes the Herald, included experimenting with human beings, falsifying parental authorizations so babies could participate in vaccine-trials conducted by the laboratory from 2007 to 2008.
The Buenos Aires Herald reports:
The charges included experimenting with human beings, falsifying parental authorizations so babies could participate in vaccine-trials conducted by the laboratory from 2007 to 2008.
Since 2007, 15,000 children under the age of one from Mendoza, San Juan and Santiago del Estero have been included in the research protocol, a statement of what the study is trying to achieve. Babies were recruited from poor families that attended to public hospitals.
A total of 7 babies died in Santiago del Estero; 5 in Mendoza; and 2 in San Juan.
By my reckoning that's just over £4,000 per child.
"GSK Argentina set a protocol at the hospital, and recruited several doctors working there," Pediatrician Ana Marchese told Continental AM radio in an interview. Adding that:
“These doctors took advantage of many illiterate parents whom take their children for treatment by pressuring and forcing them into signing these 28-page consent forms and getting them involved in the trials.”
“Laboratories can't experiment in Europe or the United States, so they come to do it in third-world countries."
GlaxoSmithKline Argentina are appealing the decision. Medical Director Rosana Felice said in a statement, "None of the deaths are related to the vaccines", and added, "Likewise, Glaxo doesn’t pay any kind of bribes in order to lead any clinical studies here in Argentina or at any other location around the globe."
Phew! Thank goodness for that, for one minute I thought they had actually been rumbled.
The GlaxoSmithKline corporate motto is, "We have a challenging and inspiring mission to improve the quality of human life by enabling people to do more, feel better and live longer."
Based on the findings in the above enquiry I'd suggest that GlaxoSmithKline look up the words 'Inspiring', 'Improve' and 'Quality'.
Full shameful story in the Buenos Aires Herald
Heads up: Pharmalot
Back story: Is GlaxoSmithKline Behaving Badly in Argentina?
On January 1st Glaxo CEO Andrew Witty was knighted.
Nice to see our monarchy getting its priorities in order.