Class-action lawsuit in Canada about Zofran morning sickness drug use in pregnancy

Woman, whose daughter died at 14 months, sues GSK over drug she took while pregnant

Zofran image
Woman, whose daughter died at 14 months, sues GSK and Novartis over Zofran drug she took while pregnant.

Nov 27, 2015 – CALGARY – The makers of an anti-nausea drug prescribed to pregnant women for morning sickness are being sued for $11-million by an Alberta woman whose daughter died 10 years ago.

In 2012, the US Department of Justice announced that GlaxoSmithKline, maker of Zofran, would pay more than $1 billion to settle claims that it illegally marketed Zofran and other medications for off-label, unapproved uses. Specifically, GlaxoSmithKline allegedly “promoted certain forms of Zofran, approved only for post-operative nausea, for the treatment of morning sickness in pregnant women.” Although doctors are free to prescribe Zofran for off-label use, it is illegal for a drug company to market its medications for unapproved uses.

Sources and more information

  • Woman, whose daughter died at 14 months, sues GSK over drug she took while pregnant, cnews, Nov 27, 2015.
  • Zofran Birth Defects, lawyersandsettlements, Feb-3-15.

Pharmaceutical companies lobbying to block the public release of clinical trial data

Drug makers accused of trying to hide test results

Big Pharma is lobbying to block the public release of clinical trial data in a move that campaigners say puts safety at risk. In the case of Seroxat drug, the full study reports had been restricted

Pharmaceutical companies are lobbying to block the public release of clinical trial data in a move that campaigners say puts patient safety at risk.

A European transparency initiative is proposed to ensure that when regulators approve new drugs the full data from the trials would be publicly released, rather than just a summary published in a medical journal.

The proposal comes after high-profile cases in which independent researchers found that drugs such as Tamiflu or the antidepressant Seroxat were more dangerous or less effective than pharmaceutical companies had claimed.

Continue reading Drug makers accused of trying to hide test results,
thetimes, October 27 2015.

GlaxoSmithKline fined £300 Million by China in Bribery Case

GSK admits it is at fault, will not appeal, and issued a statement of apology to the people of China

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The Chines GSK case involved accusations of criminal bribery to persuade hospitals and doctors to administer or sell the company’s pharmaceuticals to their patients.

In July 2012, the U.S. State Department had fined GSK $3 billion for marketing drugs for unapproved uses.

September 2004, after a one-day secret trial, a Chinese court has fined the giant British pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) £297 million (3 billion RMB at a currency exchange rate of 10.0980). for bribing hospitals and doctors to use their products.

The court also sentenced GSK’s former country manager Mark Reilly as well as four additional managers to prison time of up to four years. However, the sentences were suspended, and the managers will avoid prison with good behavior–though Reilly must leave the country.

GSK admits it’s at fault, will not appeal, and issued a statement of apology.

Sources and More Information:

  • China Fines GlaxoSmithKline Nearly $500 Million in Bribery Case, NY Times, SEPT. 19, 2014.
  • GSK China Investigation Outcome, GSK press release, 19 September 2014.
  • GSK statement of apology to the people of China, GSK media/526041, 19 September 2014.

Pharma Industry fear a Boycott more than anything else

” I don’t think industry are concerned about patient confidentiality except in so far as they are concerned to avoid being sued for injuries in clinical trials. ”

There is a very informative and fascinating debate going on between Dr David Healy and Ben Goldacre regarding options, thoughts, strategies for better clinical trials access and transparency.
Dr. David Healy posted “fuckedhere and I posted a summary here.
Dr Ben Goldacre responded here and here. I republished his reply here.
Dr. David Healy then clarified here – see below – I only added few related links (in the original text response) with the purpose to bring more clarity and/or references to the readers.

Again let me invite you to read “fucked” post 22 comments – about clinical trial data access and pharmaceutical industry transparency.

image of David Healy
David Healy is professor of psychiatry and co-founder of data based medicine, operating through , working towards making medicines safer.

The first point to make is this post isn’t about AllTrials.
AllTrials is a footnote.

It’s about the dismay that many felt at EMA backsliding. It’s about how it was obvious that something like this was on the cards. Against this background uncritical endorsement of industry looked like a bad idea. There was a desperate need to stay awake. It looks like too many of us have been asleep.
Ben offers an outline of the AllTrials strategy here. It’s helpful to have this.
His accusation that these posts misrepresent campaigns, smear people, shout abuse, and hector from the sidelines looks like a description of posts by others elsewhere. With very few exceptions any comments to the various posts on this blog that in any way fail to support Ben or AllTrials have been deleted.
The post repeated an alternate analysis – that the main thing industry wants to hide are adverse event data.
In a post 18 months ago I outlined how to achieve this industry would in public deploy the issue of patient confidentiality as a main justification for hiding data. In this it seems to me they have been assisted by Iain Chalmers editorial with Patrick Vaillance and now by Ben.
The historical evolution of the confidentiality issue is that the first informed consent forms said nothing about not showing your data to anyone else. Unnoticed industry have slipped in a “we will of course show your data to no-one clause”.
At the EMA conference on data access in November 2012, I made two points. The second was that industry would assert the notion of their privacy rights – which they have done. The other was that no one signs to have their data sequestered. Afterwards, Iain Chalmers congratulated me on the point – I thought we were on the same page.
Whether adverse event data is key or not, Peter Gotzsche through the European Ombudsman and Tom Jefferson and Peter Doshi through Tamiflu and RIAT seem to me to have done more in practical terms to move the issues forward than anyone else. It leaves me wondering why there is an endless call to celebrate Ben and not Peter or Tom.
Some of us have been working the GSK system and can see what the pitfalls are. Even if not redacted, this is a system that will make it close to impossible to analyse CSRs properly. But if it’s not proclaimed by AllTrials first it seems like such insights are unwelcome.
In several posts before the latest debacle I outlined how in my opinion there was a real chance that magnificent though he has been and clearly morally right, Peter Gotzsche’s efforts may do more harm than good. Even without taking GSK’s preposterous data access system into account, pushing for data adds to the undue premium being put on RCTs Twenty years ago the moral case for access was as strong and the risks consequent on failing were much less in that we were less hypnotized by RCTs than we are now.
Far from responding shrilly, Peter Gotzsche recognized the risk and we have been collaborating ever more closely since. The issues are so complex we might all be making mistakes – the only people unwilling to concede this seem to be AllTrials.
The push for data access remains morally compelling but there are other things that can be done that might be more effective.
As the BBC program a week ago on Thalidomide, and previous posts here, make clear, industry fear a boycott more than anything else. It is the only thing they have ever responded to.
At the moment the focus is on a bunch of bureaucrats in EMA, who aren’t there with a brief to protect us other than by regulating the wording of advertisements.
The focus should be on doctors who treat patients. We could refuse to use drugs where there is no access to the data. It shouldn’t even take courage to do this. In my opinion, this is the call that’s needed now rather than a call to support more of what AllTrials have been doing. But who will lead such a call?
Along with colleagues I put forward a softer version of a boycott – an AbbVie – which encouraged doctors and patients to use drugs but to report on the adverse events which would in fact make these chemicals better medicines. It would be difficult for government or anyone else to gainsay this win-win option in the way they might come out against the lose-lose of a boycott.
There is a conflict of interest here. has a stake in this idea. It was set up before AllTrials to move ideas like this forward. I suspect those of us working on RxISK in the evenings and at weekends have been putting far more hours into the effort than the AllTrials team have.
At the end of the day, I may well be wrong on this, but I personally think AllTrials have been naïve. I don’t think industry are concerned about patient confidentiality except in so far as they are concerned to avoid being sued for injuries in clinical trials.
Recent decades have seen industry put Litigation Support Defences in place. As outlined a decade ago in Let Them Eat Prozac, putting a premium on clinical trials has been a key element in their litigation support strategy. Seen from this vantage point AllTrials offers Pharma a lot – all without the effort of having to conspire or fund a conspiracy.
Playing straight into industry’s hands is a hazard for all of us. Good intentions aren’t enough to save us. I’d rest more comfortably if the key players in AllTrials had a track record in bringing adverse events to light or even a record of supporting those trying to do so – if they’d really antagonized industry good and proper. It’s not that partnership isn’t nice but perhaps after playing hard to get first. ”

Find all our posts about the AllTrials campaign, Clinical trials, Dr Ben GoldacreDr. David HealyGlaxoSmithKlinePeter Gøtzsche and Sir Iain Chalmers.

David Healy misrepresents All Trials and Ben Goldacre

This blog post by David Healy is absurd – Dr Ben Goldacre response to Dr David Healy

After I posted “Fu*£ed or WTF is going on? @DrDavidHealy Thoughts about #AllTrials @BenGoldacre #GSK @Truthman30” yesterday, Dr Ben Goldacre visited DES Daughter Network’s blog leaving a comment which has now appeared on Dr David Healy’s website. I only added few related links (in the original text response) with the purpose to bring more clarity and/or references to the readers.

image of ben goldacre
Ben Goldacre is doctor, nerd cheerleader, Bad Science person, stats geek, procrastinator.

” Hi there,

I’ve posted this on David Healy’s blog, it’s currently “In Moderation” so I’m posting it here too in case it’s of interest.

This blog post by David Healy is absurd.

The AllTrials campaign is really simple: it calls for all trials to be registered, with their full methods and results made publicly available. Where CSRs have been made, we call for those to be placed in the public domain.

Healy says we’ve created a situation where people are withholding CSRs: that’s simply absurd, this is precisely what we campaign against.

Healy says we’ve created a situation where CSRs are inappropriately redacted: that’s absurd, again, this is specifically what we campaign against.

Healy says we have created a situation where drug companies get to choose who has access to CSRs: again, that is ridiculous, this is exactly what we campaign against.

GSK have signed up to the AllTrials campaign: they join over a hundred patient groups, more than 75,000 members of the public, NICE, Wellcome, MRC, almost all academic and medical professional bodies in the UK, and a growing number around the world. When Bad Pharma came out, industry and others were able to pretend that information about clinical trials is no longer withheld. We’ve transformed that, triggered two select committees and put the policy issue on the map, created a coalition, unpicked a web of dangerous false reassurances by professional bodies, and made it impossible for industry to engage in glib denialism.

I’m delighted that GSK have signed up to AllTrials, along with all the other organisations. There are lots of problems in medicine. There lots of people and organisations who’ve done – and continue to do – things I think are harmful to public health. But where people do the right thing, I will applaud them for it. I genuinely think that’s the right thing to do. It doesn’t mean you’re part of an elaborate and complex conspiracy with people. It doesn’t mean you approve of everything they do at work and at home.

It’s easy, and attractive, to scream from the sidelines, and carry on screaming forever. It’s also possible to shout out clearly and succinctly about problems, try to set out and discuss clear solutions, floodlight the path forwards, and encourage people to go down it.

Lastly, and specifically, the issue of individual personal data. The AllTrials campaign doesn’t call for all the rich individual patient data from all trials to be simply posted publicly in the public domain: that poses too much of a privacy risk, because patients are identifiable in this data. This privacy risk isn’t as big as is claimed by some of those who seek to block transparency, but we decided that the issues around graded access control to IPD are too complex for a simple headline campaign, and we didn’t want to risk industry using the issues around protecting participants’ privacy as an excuse to derail discussion on the very important separate issue of access to methods and summary results. We were absolutely right: industry have repeatedly tried to pretend that AllTrials calls for individual trial participants’ personal data to be posted online, even though AllTrials is specifically focused on registration, methods, results, and CSRs. But as David Healy knows, most of the people involved in the AllTrials campaign, myself, Iain Chalmers and the BMJ included, are closely involved in pushing for greater transparency on IPD too. It is simply absurd to claim otherwise.

The comments section on this blog is clearly the worst place to say this, but it really is a big waste of everyone’s time to have to deal with the kind of misrepresentation and abuse that David Healy keeps posting. From past experience, I don’t believe that David will engage constructively with my taking the time to correct these repeated misrepresentations, and I honestly think that’s a shame. We’re all – most of us at any rate – trying to get things improved. Everyone’s time is short, and people run things like AllTrials in their spare time. If Healy has a better way to make things better, that’s great, he should crack on with it and get others behind him. If it involves misrepresenting campaigns, smearing people, shouting abuse, and hectoring from the sidelines, then I won’t be in.

As an addendum, three brief specifics, since time is short:

David Healy, above: 
“Consent processes in clinical trials were about telling you you were on a new drug that might be dangerous or might be involved in a marketing trial. Instead they have become a way for companies to justify hiding your data on the basis of a confidentiality clause they have slipped into the forms. Iain ChalmersBen Goldacre and AllTrials appear to have signed up to this.”
– This is complete and utter fantasy. Neither I nor AllTrials have signed up to this. David Healy will be unable to provide any evidence to show that we have. Consent forms being used to justify withholding information is exactly what I’ve campaigned against.

David Healy, above:
 “That what would be put in place was a mechanism that gave the appearances of transparency but in fact would lock academics into agreeing with GSK and other companies as to what the outcomes of their trials have been.”
– This is completely bizarre. AllTrials simply calls for all trials to be registered, with their full methods and results made freely publicly available, and CSRs where they’ve been created. It is impossible to argue that this “locks academics into agreeing with GSK and other companies as to what the outcomes of their trials have been”.

David Healy, above:
 “Rape is a loaded word these days”.
It’s always been a loaded word, David. “

Fu*£ed or WTF is going on?

Dr. David Healy: “We told you here 18 months ago not to trust GSK – but BMJ and All Trials went ahead”…

image of David Healy
David Healy is professor of psychiatry and co-founder of data based medicine, operating through , working towards making medicines safer.

Last year, after GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) was fined $3 billions, then signed the All Trials campaign, we were wondering if other pharmaceutical companies would follow GSK plans to share detailed clinical trial data online for researchers. What if “their selective transparency is a smokescreen for a wider, more nefarious agenda, which is further control” warns @Truthman30…

In his recent post, Dr. David Healy explains the following:

Read Fucked – Apologies for the Language
by Dr David Healy, CEO of RxISK, May 21, 2014.

Institutional Corruption of Pharmaceuticals and the Drug Safety Myth

Economist Dean Baker on Corrupt Pharmaceuticals, FDA and Government Fines

Following GlaxoSmithKline fined $3 Billion and their plans to share detailed Clinical Trial data online for Researchers, famed economist Dean Baker discusses the corruption, criminality, fines, and the ludicrous profit margins in the pharmaceutical industry with Doctor Sidney Wolf

Read Institutional Corruption of Pharmaceuticals and the Drug Safety Myth, Health Impact News, 4 Dec 2013

  • The Three Levels of Institutional Corruption
  • Do Pharmaceutical Companies Have a Moral Duty to Do No Harm?
  • Conflicts of Interest and Institutional Corruption Within the FDA
  • Can Institutional Integrity Be Restored to Produce Safer Drugs?
  • Proof that “Science-Based” Medicine is Disintegrating

Related posts:

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) Plans to share detailed Clinical Trial data online for Researchers

GSK gives update on plans to share detailed clinical trial data as part of its commitment to transparency

GlaxoSmithKline has a new Online System for Clinical Study Data free access

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK)  new online system will enable researchers to request access to anonymised patient level data that sit behind the results of clinical trials.
It is hoped that sharing these data with researchers will help to further scientific research, increase understanding of new and current medicines and ultimately improve patient care.
Will other pharmaceutical companies follow?

Find out more:

GlaxoSmithKline was fined $3 Billion … How is this new ruling going to help the DES Exposed ?

The case concerns 10 drugs, including Paxil, Wellbutrin, Avandia and Advair

GlaxoSmithKline chief executive Sir Andrew Witty promises action after the company was fined for mis-selling drugs in the US.Pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline plead guilty to three criminal charges over mis-selling of drugs and withholding of data and was fined $3bn for healthcare fraud.

What about DES Marketing… and the Supreme Court Ruling… will it help the DES Exposed? What do you think? Read How is this new ruling going to help the DES Exposed by KMFDallas

Please sign the petition Let’s all convince Eli Lilly to adequately deal with the Reality of their Disaster – Time for Actions