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News Archives 4341-4360
Number Title Post Date
4341 Call For Full Access To Dubious Tamiflu Drug Trial Data 13/01/2011 14:42:58
4342 UK Police /Social Services Child Kidnapping In Progress 13/01/2011 14:46:30
4343 New Iraq War Grilling For Tony Blair 13/01/2011 14:49:12
4344 WikiLeaks' Jacob Appelbaum Confounds US Customs With Bill Of Rights Thumbdrive 13/01/2011 14:51:49
4345 Julian Assange Has Secret Files On Murdoch And News Corp 13/01/2011 14:55:41
4346 WikiLeaks Fulfils Bradley Manning Pledge Despite MasterCard Visa PayPal Sabotage 13/01/2011 15:00:18
4347 Protests Against Benefits Cuts UK 17/01/2011 11:06:27
4348 Campaign To Lobby MPs Over Cuts To Free Legal Aid UK Launched 17/01/2011 11:08:37
4349 'Lord' Mandelson Still Waitng For Gravy Train 17/01/2011 11:10:52
4350 Six More UK MP Piggies Reported To Police Over Expenses Swindle 17/01/2011 11:13:15
4351 Health Advocacy Groups And Charities Take Drug Company Cash Without Disclosure 17/01/2011 11:16:03
4352 French Reform Pledged After Drugs Deaths Scandal Exposed At Highest Political Level 17/01/2011 11:21:25
4353 Lies, Damned Lies And Medical Science 17/01/2011 11:24:18
4354 New Report Shows Mad Cow Disease Transmission Is Airborne 17/01/2011 11:27:07
4355 Lawyer Protests Brutal Treatment Of Bradley Manning 17/01/2011 11:30:54
4356 Swiss Whistleblower Delivers Tax Evasion Bank Documents To WikiLeaks Two Days Before Trial 17/01/2011 11:33:35
4357 What Does WikiLeaks Have On Bank Of America? 17/01/2011 11:36:35
4358 Nothing Is Known About The Danger Of Adjuvanted Vaccines In Pregnancy 17/01/2011 11:41:29
4359 Peter Mandelson's Krafty Deal - Lazards Bank 19/01/2011 13:11:04
4360 Revolting UK MPs Set To Grab Pay Rise 19/01/2011 13:13:07

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Health Advocacy Groups And Charities Take Drug Company Cash Without Disclosure
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Health Advocacy Groups Take Drug Company Cash—Often Without Full Disclosures, Report Says

by Marian Wang
Jan. 13, 2011


We’ve reported extensively on the ties between pharmaceutical companies and the physicians they fund to speak, consult and do research [2]. But doctors aren’t the only ones taking money from drug companies—and they’re not the only stakeholders in the field of health whose public disclosures aren’t complete.

According to a new study [3] in the American Journal of Public Health, not-for-profit health advocacy groups like the American Diabetes Association and the National Alliance on Mental Illness also get money from drug companies in the form of grants that—more often than not—aren’t disclosed by those groups.

The study examined more than 160 health advocacy organizations that received funding from Eli Lilly in the first half of 2007. (Lilly was the first company to make its grant registry public.) Here’s what the analysis found:

As an aggregate, 25% of HAOs acknowledged Lilly funding anywhere on their Web site. Eighteen percent acknowledged Lilly in their 2007 annual report, 1% acknowledged Lilly on a corporate sponsors page, and 10% acknowledged Lilly as the sponsor of the grant event reported in the [Lilly Grant Registry.]

Health advocacy groups often advocate for research and the approval of new drugs on top of promoting public awareness. According to the study, their reputation as a trusted resource for information on specific diseases and their treatments should prompt “far more detailed” disclosure of their corporate grants and industry relationships.

This report isn’t the first time such ties have been spotlighted.

The National Alliance on Mental Illness, or NAMI, came under similar scrutiny back in 2009 when Sen. Charles Grassley, a top Republican, began making inquiries.

From 2006 to 2008, the group took in nearly $23 million [4] in drug company donations—about three-quarters of its fund-raising. At the time, NAMI’s executive director told The New York Times that “the percentage of money from pharma has been higher than we have wanted it to be” and promised greater disclosures.

Following the revelations about NAMI, Sen. Charles Grassley sent letters [5] to 33 health advocacy groups asking them to disclose details about their financial ties to drug and device makers. He has not released the responses he received from the groups.

Today’s report, however, highlighted continued concerns about the degree to which a group’s funding influences its advocacy and helps boost sales for drug companies making donations. Here’s an example from the report, involving NAMI:

This lack of transparency is disappointing because, either by design or through a convergence of interests, the HAOs in the current study pursued activities that promoted the sale of Lilly products.

In the area of neurosciences, Lilly gave NAMI $450,000 for its Campaign for the Mind of America. NAMI has advocated that cost should not be a consideration when prescribing for patients. ‘‘For the most severely disabled,’’ insisted NAMI, ‘‘effective treatment often means access to the newest medications such as atypical anti- psychotic and anti-depressive agents. . . . Doctors must be allowed to utilize the latest breakthrough in medical science . . . without bureaucratic restrictions to the access for life-saving medications.’’To the degree that NAMI’s campaign succeeded, the market for Lilly’s neuroscience drugs expanded.

As we’ve noted [6], the health care law contains a provision requiring greater disclosure of drug company payments to physicians by 2013, but it does not include company payments to health advocacy organizations.

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