drug companies

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How Doctors &#39;Hold Birth Control Hostage&#39;
Doctors 'Hold Birth
Control Hostage' 

Doctors 'Hold Birth Control Hostage'

Stephanie Mencimer: Pap smear guidelines are a scam

(Newser) - A doctor had Stephanie Mencimer "over a barrel," she writes in Mother Jones : "Come in for a pelvic exam, or I won't refill your birth control pills." Mencimer not only refused to take another Pap smear—and risk "the ensuing misery" of a false...

Dangerous Counterfeit Cancer Drug Found in US

Fake Avastin missing active ingredient

(Newser) - A fake version of best-selling anti-cancer drug Avastin has been found in the US. Swiss drugmaker Roche has warned doctors and hospitals to be on the lookout for the counterfeit medication, which lacks the intravenous drug's active ingredient, the Wall Street Journal reports. Samples of the fake drug are...

US to Big Pharma: Disclose What You Pay Docs

New rules aim to increase transparency

(Newser) - Studies have found that when doctors accept payments from drug companies, it can influence their treatment decisions—so the Obama administration will soon require drug companies to disclose those payments. The New York Times reports that around 25% of doctors receive cash from drug companies for consulting, speaking engagements, and...

Scientists Debate Ending Chimp Research

Ethics, declining usefulness cited for the change

(Newser) - After years of using chimpanzees for scientific research—shooting them into space, testing hepatitis vaccines on them, using them for HIV studies—man's closest relative could be nearing retirement, reports the Washington Post . The European Union banned using chimps for scientific research last year, and now the Institute of...

Stung by a Scorpion? Mexico Will Save You

Despite 250 stings a year, US drug companies won't make anti-venom

(Newser) - With the United States having run out of scorpion anti-venom nearly 10 years ago, the FDA has just approved a Mexican-made treatment for scorpion stings, reports NPR . Although there are about 250 severe scorpion stings a year in the United States—mainly in the "Venom Belt" in the southwest—...

Pfizer CEO Jeffrey Kindler Replaced in Surprise Move

Unexpected move likely ouster: analysts

(Newser) - Pfizer abruptly replaced its CEO and chairman yesterday, saying Jeffrey B. Kindler was retiring after 4.5 years leading the world's biggest drugmaker to "recharge." Analysts saw the unexpected departure as an ouster, however, coming amid repeated failures from Pfizer's labs to produce new, much-needed blockbuster drugs, multiple...

Disgraced Doctors Land at Big Pharma
 Disgraced Doctors 
 Land at Big Pharma 


Disgraced Doctors Land at Big Pharma

Hundreds of pitchmen found to have blemished records

(Newser) - Pharmaceutical companies say they hire highly respected doctors as their white-coat sales force, peddling their drugs to other physicians. But a Pro Publica investigation has discovered that hundreds of these pitchmen have been accused of professional misconduct, been disciplined by state boards, or lacked credentials. Medical board records in the...

Drugmakers Hike Prices Ahead of Reform

9% rise, in a year of falling prices, will add $10B to drug spending

(Newser) - Bracing for health care reform, drug companies have been raising prices at the fastest rate in almost 20 years—even as they pledge to support Washington's goal of cutting the nation's drug bill. The pharmaceutical industry is scrambling to get the price base as high as possible before legislation to...

Big Pharma Flouts Laws on Off-Label Uses

Billions in fines don't stop illegal promotion

(Newser) - Back in 2004, a unit of drug giant Pfizer pleaded guilty to marketing a drug, Neurotonin, for unapproved uses, paid $430 million in fines, and promised to clean up its act—which it had no intention of doing. "At the very same time Pfizer was in our office negotiating...

Pfizer Pays Record $2.3B Fine for False Marketing

(Newser) - Pfizer will shell out $2.3 billion—a record for a health care fraud settlement—over deceptive marketing of its drugs, the Los Angeles Times reports. Pfizer and one of its subsidiaries marketed four drugs based on off-label uses specifically prohibited by the FDA. The settlement with the Justice Department...

Drug Giants Target Cancer
 Drug Giants Target Cancer 

Drug Giants Target Cancer

Scientific advances, potentially huge profits attract Big Pharma to cancer fight

(Newser) - Major drug companies are tying their fortunes to cancer like never before, the New York Times reports. The firms—inspired by advancements in science as well as the high prices cancer drugs command—are pouring unprecedented resources into the search for new cancer drugs. The drug giants hope cancer treatments...

Poor Nations Pick Up Tab as Obama Woos Big Pharma

(Newser) - The Obama administration is thwarting poor countries' access to affordable drugs in order to win Big Pharma's support for health care reform, according to Doctors Without Borders and other NGOs. As the Los Angeles Times reports, governments from Asia to Latin America are feeling pressure from Washington on their use...

Pharma to Push Obama Plan in $150M Ad Blitz

Drug companies get behind health care reform, to Congress' concern

(Newser) - Drug companies have authorized their lobbyists to spend up to $150 million on TV ads supporting Barack Obama's health care reform plan—a surprisingly large sum that suggests the industry still has a deal with the White House on capping pharma's costs, reports the New York Times. A few spots...

Pharma Ghostwriters Penned Medical Papers on HRT

Drug firms may play bigger role than thought in medical lit

(Newser) - Ghostwriters funded by a drug firm were deeply involved in writing papers supporting therapies that helped the firm’s sales boom, court papers show. The 26 scientific papers, published in medical journals from 1998 to 2005, highlighted the benefits of hormone replacement therapy over the risks, a boon to Wyeth,...

Activists Torch Drug CEO's Home, Steal Mom's Ashes

(Newser) - Animal rights militants have torched the home of the CEO of drug giant Novartis and stolen his mother's ashes from a Swiss cemetery, say company officials. Employees' cars have also been vandalized and attacked with crude explosive devices, reports the Wall Street Journal.

Easy on the Tylenol: FDA Panel
 Easy on the Tylenol: FDA Panel 

Easy on the Tylenol: FDA Panel

(Newser) - An outside panel reporting to the Food and Drug Administration recommended today that the maximum daily dosage of Tylenol be reduced and the Extra Strength variety of the painkiller be available only by prescription, Bloomberg reports. The panel of advisers, whose suggestions are nonbinding, noted acetaminophen’s effect on the...

Obama? Big Pharma. Here's an $80B Drug Discount

(Newser) - Big Pharma has offered the feds a discount of up to $80 billion on drugs for programs like Medicare, the Washington Post reports. The pledge, which comes at a crucial moment in the health-reform debate, may be a pre-emptive strike before President Obama pushes for a proposed $100 billion price...

FDA: Get Off Smell-Killing Zicam Nasal Spray, Now

Agency received over 130 reports of loss of smell sense

(Newser) - The Food and Drug Administration is calling on consumers to stop using Zicam nasal treatments because they can permanently kill the sense of smell, the Wall Street Journal reports. Zicam is an over-the-counter cold and allergy medication sold in several forms; customers should reject internasal products that contain zinc. The...

Swiss Pharma Won't Donate Swine Flu Vaccine to Poor

Novartis defies WHO calls to give free doses to poor

(Newser) - Swiss pharma giant Novartis is defying the World Health Organization by refusing to donate swine flu vaccines to the world's poor, despite the designation of H1N1 as the first pandemic in 40 years, reports the Financial Times. Last week the WHO's director general called on drug companies to show "...

'Disease of Kings' Becomes Middle Class Scourge

Gout is not just for Henry VIII anymore

(Newser) - It used to be called the “disease of kings” because only aristocrats could pig out enough to get it. But these days, gout, an extremely painful arthritis of the foot and other joints, is spreading like wildfire through America’s ever-widening middle class, the New York Times reports. Drug...

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