Friday, November 16, 2007

Silencing an Avandia Whistle-Blower

Both Ed Silverman on the PharmLot blog and the Wall Street Journal Health blog covered the report by US Senator Charles Grassley (R - Iowa) about the attempt by GlaxoSmithKline executives to intimidate an early critic of the cardiovascular effects of Avandia (rosiglitazone). As we just noted, apparently chiefly responsible for this whistle-blower intimidation was then GSK executive "Tadataka Yamada, who now heads the global health program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and today was announced as a board member of the FDA’s new Reagan-Udall Foundation, which is designed to foster drug research," per Ed Silverman (see also our post here.)

Also the WSJ blog noted that Grassley "invited researchers who feel they have been bullied by the industry to contact him. And, he added, 'they can also anonymously provide information and documents by mail or by fax.' Grassley ... even helpfully announced the fax number — 202-228-2131 — on the floor."

Since support for health care whistle-blowers has been sorely lacking, at least the fax number is a welcome development.

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