04 June 2010

Large Scale Placebo Medicine

Pharmalot has the story, WHO Criticized For Pandemic Conflicts Of Interest, which discusses criticism of the World Health Organization's reaction to criticism of it by PACE, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe.

In a press release (455/(2010)) PACE says,

"...there was “overwhelming evidence that the seriousness of the pandemic was vastly overrated by WHO”, resulting in a distortion of public health priorities.

Presenting his report, Mr Flynn told the committee: “this was a pandemic that never really was”, and described the vaccination programme as “placebo medicine on a large scale” (see video below).

In its adopted text, the committee identifies what it calls “grave shortcomings” in the transparency of decision-making about the outbreak, generating concerns about the influence of the pharmaceutical industry on decisions taken. Plummeting confidence in such advice could prove “disastrous” in the case of a severe future pandemic, it warns.

In particular, the WHO and European health institutions were not willing to publish the names and declarations of interest of the members of the WHO Emergency Committee and relevant European advisory bodies directly involved in recommendations concerning the pandemic, the parliamentarians point out.

The report, The handling of the H1N1 pandemic: more transparency
, can be found here (pdf).

The story came to light earlier this year, see Two Doses Of Crazy; while it is easy to be wiser with hindsight, a casual dismissal of these types of stories doesn't help anyone.

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