martes, 11 de diciembre de 2012

"Drug firms" usaron pacientes en Alemania (DDR) como "human guinea pigs"



Communist East Germany allowed Western drug companies to use its medical patients as unwitting guinea pigs for tests with untried pharmaceuticals in return for hundreds of thousands in hard currency, a television documentary by Germany’s ARD television channel has revealed.
The disturbing disclosures about the former communist state’s patients-for-cash scheme comes only weeks after an admission by the Swedish furniture giant Ikea that East German political prisoners were used to make its products before the fall of the Berlin wall in 1989.
The ARD documentary Tests and the Dead, which was aired for the first time this week, sheds light on other dubious practices East Germany resorted to in an attempt to sustain its failing economy.
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Using information gleaned from East German Stasi files, the film shows how, in 1983, Communist Party Central Committee members hatched a secret deal with Western drug companies enabling them to test their unlicensed products on unwitting patients by using specially selected doctors and clinics. Hubert Bruchmüller, a former East German who is now lives on a disability allowance because of a heart complaint, recalled in the film how he was used as an unwitting guinea pig. The documentary makers showed that without his knowledge, he had been given the drug Spirapril made by the pharmaceutical company Sandoz, while being treated for a heart complaint in a clinic in the East German city of  Lotsau in the late 1980s.
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Only the French pharmaceuticals giant Sanofi-Adventis, which is a successor company to Hoechst, allowed the film makers access to its files. (Más)


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