Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News
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Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News
Pharmaguy curates and provides insights into selected drug industry news and issues.
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Giving J&J an Ethics Prize is Like Giving Strom Thurmond a Civil Rights Award

Giving J&J an Ethics Prize is Like Giving Strom Thurmond a Civil Rights Award | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News |

"Should a drug company that’s agreed to pay billions in criminal and civil fines for illegally marketing its drugs to children and dementia patients be honored with an ethics prize?"


Um, no.


The company is Johnson & Johnson, which has of course paid out a lot of cash in federal penalties for fraudulent marketing. That's not a problem for an organization called Fellowships at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics, or FASPE, which is honoring the company next month with an award for "ethical leadership." Art Caplan of NYU will be presenting the award. If you'd like to attend, you can get prime seating for your entire group for a mere $50,000.


Sheila Kaplan of Stat News has the story, but sadly, it's behind a paywall. Here is an excerpt:


FASPE Chairman David Goldman, an attorney in New York, said he was aware of the pharma giant’s various ethical tangles, but believes the company has moved beyond them. “We do think they’ve acknowledged their failures and taken the appropriate steps to resolve them,” he said. “They know what they’ve done; we talked to them about it and they’ve taken the right action.”


The award will be accepted by Dr. Joanne Waldstreicher, J & J’s chief medical officer. Goldman said she was “as committed to the ethics program and ethical behavior as anybody who we’ve seen.” He added: “We think we’ve got this right.”


Others disagree, noting that in 2013, J&J and its subsidiaries agreed to pay $2.2 billion to resolve criminal and civil allegations of improperly promoting several prescription drugs, including paying kickbacks to physicians. That was one of the largest health care fraud settlements in US history. The company has also lost recent product liability cases involving allegations of its talcum powder causing ovarian cancer.


“It’s like giving Strom Thurmond a civil rights prize, or Wells Fargo an award for business ethics,” said Dr. Carl Elliott, a bioethicist at the University of Minnesota. “Of all the potential people or organizations to honor with an ethics award, why pick a company that has just paid a $2.2 billion federal penalty for fraud?”

Pharma Guy's insight:

Further reading:

  • “Johnson & Johnson Guilty Again! Ordered to Pay $1 Billion in Putative Damages, the Largest This Year”; 
  • “The $70 Million Breast Job: That's What J&J Must Pay to Male Teen Who Took Risperdal and Developed Large Breasts”; 
  • “America’s Most Admired Lawbreaker”;
  • "How Gorsky Drove 46% - 66% of Risperdal Sales for Off-Label Use"; 
  • “J&J Pleads Guilty for Knowingly Selling Tainted Children's Tylenol. A Failure of Corporate Accountability”; 
  • “J&J #Pharma Earnings Up 18.7% Despite Being Top Fined Drug Company!”; 
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1 Person Correctly Ranked All Companies in The Pharma Criminal & Civil Penalty Challenge!

1 Person Correctly Ranked All Companies in The Pharma Criminal & Civil Penalty Challenge! | Pharmaguy's Insights Into Drug Industry News |

Public Citizen released additional data on pharmaceutical industry criminal and civil settlements, stemming from its March report tallying all settlements with both federal and state governments from 1991 through 2015. The new data provide company-specific totals for the most recent 10-year period (2006-2015), which demonstrate that, for most companies, the vast majority of penalties were paid out in those 10 years since 2006. During the 10 years from 2006-2015, 21 companies entered into two or more settlements with the federal government.

The Challenge: Can you rank the Top 10 of those companies in terms of the amount paid over those 10 years? Click on "Read More" to see how well respondents did.

Forty-three brave souls took the challenge. Only one person was able to put all the companies in the correct order.


Click here for more...

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