Thursday, December 13, 2012
Mylan NZ and the 36 Hours
Q: What does a CEO of a pharmaceutical company say to a grieving mother who is crying outside his office?
A: Merry Christmas
Mylan NZ CEO, Lloyd Price, whom I have written about before, met with Maria Bradshaw and myself on Tuesday 11th December.
Maria, who lost her son, Toran, to suicide on the 20th March 2008, has, for some considerable time been trying to gain access to the CARM assessment filed by Mylan NZ. CARM is the Center for Adverse Reactions Monitoring out here in New Zealand.
The Merry Christmas jibe at the head of this post may be a tad unfair on Lloyd Price. Quite often it's difficult for people to openly talk about suicide and they say things that they later regret. If Mylan's CEO still thinks his Christmas wishes were the correct approach to a grieving mother crying in his lobby then who am I to tackle his conscience.
It was purely by chance that myself and Maria Bradshaw met with Mr Price. The plan, initially, was to drop off Maria's passport and Toran's birth certificate. Mylan have requested this as evidence that Maria is in fact Toran's biological mother.
Mr Price, who was in a conference room adjacent to reception, overheard the conversation between Ms Bradshaw and a receptionist. He invited her and I to his room.
Maria introduced me as her partner before he left the room briefly to photocopy the 'evidence' [passport and birth certificate]
He was quite shocked that this matter had not been dealt with, in fact, he claimed that he thought it had been dealt with over 7 weeks ago. He assured Maria that she would have what she wanted within 36 hours, basically a PDF would be emailed to her with the information she has been after for so many years.
Price also mentioned that he wasn't happy with a British blogger and neither was former lawyer for Mylan, Dr Luigi Palombi. Price claimed that the British blogger had claimed that he [Price] had lied.
That British blogger was me and I told Price this. What followed was kind of strange. I didn't feel the need to have a public slanging match with Mylan's CEO particularly as this wasn't about me and my opinion it was about giving a grieving mother what she wanted.
I can vouch for Maria here, last thing she wanted was a CEO of Mylan to look at a photograph of her dead son [Maria always carries a photo of Toran] only to be told that he had three children of his own and that teenagers are irrepressible at that age and you can’t keep them down.
Ouch, kind of cringing given the way Toran died but, as I said, not everyone is comfortable around those grieving the loss of an only child.
I've wrote about both Palombi and Price before [Links after this post]. If I accused Price of being a liar then I would just love for him to show me exactly where that statement is. Truth is, I didn't.
What I did highlight is the hoops Maria Bradshaw has had to jump through and the way in which Mylan's CEO closes his eyes to emails sent to Maria Bradshaw during what has been, and what still is, a very rough time for her.
Price defended Mylan as one would expect before adding that there are 8 scientists at Mylan. It was a less than impressive performance by Price considering the subject matter he was dealing with.
Mylan [Lloyd Price], as I said, promised Maria the document within 36 hours. It's been almost 56 hours now.
Maria Bradshaw has written about this on the Mad In America website where she is a foreign correspondent. See 'The Price is Wrong'
I don't know what the motive is for Mylan. Price, who, every time he speaks does so for Mylan, seemed disinterested in matters on Tuesday, his major concern was that his name and actions had been written by a blogger from the UK.
Cry me a river please.
On the scientists at Mylan - he should know that Fluox, the drug the New Zealand government have concluded was the most probable cause of Toran's death , is a very controversial drug indeed and has been the subject of many scientific papers.
Mylan NZ manufacture generic drugs. Drug companies such as Mylan [there are many] usually wait until a patent is running out on a drug before applying to market it themselves. I look upon these kind of pharmaceutical companies as bottom feeders. In Mylan's case they went after Eli Lilly's [now Lilly] Prozac.
Let's give Price and his 8 scientists something to ponder over the Christmas period.
In 1990 the American Journal of Psychiatry published a study entitled "Emergence of Intense Suicidal Preoccupation During Fluoxetine Treatment"  The results showed that the timing of the suicidality and violence coincided with the patients' going on fluoxetine. The reaction only subsided when the fluoxetine was stopped.
In 1991 Prakash Masand, M.D, Sanjay Gupta, M.D and Mantosh Dewan, M.D from the State University of New York Health Science Center, Syracuse, NY wrote to The New England Journal of Medicine. They reported on two patients in whom suicidal ideation and fluoxetine treatment were strongly associated. 
One of the most startling cases that I have read regarding fluoxetine featured in a book by John Cornwell entitled, "The Power to Harm" 
The book revolves around the tragic case of Joe Wesbecker who went in to his place of employment [Standard Gravure, in Louisville, Kentucky] and shot 20 people, killing 8, before turning the gun on himself.
The plaintiffs, the 12 survivors of Webecker's killing spree, filed a suit against Eli Lilly after they had learned that Wesbecker had been prescribed Prozac [fluoxetine]
I learned of a new drug whilst reading this book, a drug manufactured by Eli Lilly and one that they fought tooth and nail over behind the scenes [sidebar, Judge's chambers] to not be introduced as evidence in this particular case.
It was a drug that would play a major part in this trial and one that was a leverage for the plaintiffs to strike a 'secret deal' with Lilly's law team.
The verdict of this case is widely known. The Juror's cleared Prozac in the role of these murders. What is largely unknown is the secret deal the defence and plaintiffs struck before that jury verdict was announced. A deal that rested on the introduction of a previous drug manufactured by Eli Lilly - that drug being Oraflex.
Lilly lawyers knew that the Oralflex information would be damaging to their defence and at first the Judge [Judge John Potter] agreed with them that the jury shouldn't hear it.
As the case progressed Lilly's lawyers offered witnesses to make claims of how good their system was for collecting and analysing side effects.
The plaintiffs lawyers pounced and argued that Lilly's lawyers had basically opened the door of rebuttal.
In other words, the plaintiffs could now argue that Lilly's system wasn't as good as they had made out in court.
It was then decided by Judge Potter that the Oraflex information could be introduced and that the jury could hear it.
What followed defies belief and if you had a lack of faith in the judicial system then this book won't comfort you.
If the lawyers for the plaintiffs would have introduced this information then many of the jurors [later interviewed when this came to light] would have put the murders down to Prozac.
Sadly, a deal [unbeknownst to Judge Potter] was struck not to introduce this evidence. The plaintiffs and defence had, it appears, agreed on a sum of money not to introduce this damning evidence.
Judge Potter's reaction on learning of this 'secret deal'? Well, you will have to read the book.
It's a great insight into the world and underhand tactics of lawyers who represent pharmaceutical companies and, it has to be said, a world where lawyers for plaintiffs take the lure of the dollar rather than the future safety of patients who take Prozac.
Just a few examples regarding the history of Fluox for Lloyd Price and his 8 scientists. The book would make an ideal Christmas present.
58 hours and counting now. It would appear that Mylan cannot keep a promise.
Merry Christmas to all the staff at Mylan NZ. Your attitude toward death was amplified on Tuesday 11th December.
Footnote. Shortly after Maria Bradshaw and I left the Mylan building my blog was visited by a Mylan employee, could be Price, could be someone else [5, 6] - **The times on  are British times.
One would think, if it was Price, that his time would be better spent attending to matters at hand rather than looking at stories on this blog.
Mylan NZ, a Lawyer, Causality and U-Turn
Mylan Pharmaceuticals: The Emails, U-Turns and Denials
 CARM assessment of Toran Henry [JPG]
 Emergence of intense suicidal preoccupation during fluoxetine treatment Am J Psychiatry 1990;147:207-210.
 Suicidal Ideation Related to Fluoxetine Treatment N Engl J Med 1991; 324:420
 The Power to Harm - Mind, Medicine and Murder on Trial - John Cornwell Penguin Books
 Myaln NZ Visit Fiddaman Blog [Link]
 Mylan NZ IP Address Confirmed [Link]