Op-ed views and opinions expressed are solely those of the author.
The CEO of Pfizer (market cap: $240.5 billion) is Albert Bourla (2020 compensation package: $21 million). Bourla and his colleagues want your kids to start getting jabbed with his company’s COVID-19 vaccine by Thanksgiving. Triumphant after the Biden administration last week approved Pfizer’s COVID-19 booster shots (estimated global sales: $26 billion), the company is touting study results (preliminary and non-peer-reviewed), which purportedly show “robust” antibody response and “favorable” safety outcomes for children ages 5-11 who received a two-dose combo in clinical trials.
Now, here are some facts all moms and dads must know about Pfizer before they allow their young daughters and sons to be guinea pigs of a profit-maximizing multinational corporation.
Twenty-five years ago, Pfizer sent a team to Kano, Nigeria, during a meningococcal meningitis outbreak. They conducted an “open label” (unblinded) clinical trial involving 200 children, half of whom were given Pfizer’s new antibiotic Trovan and half of whom received the gold standard treatment, ceftriaxone. Watchdogs noted that Pfizer used substantially lower doses of ceftriaxone to rig the trials in favor of Trovan.
At the time of the Kano trial, Pfizer was pushing for approval from the Food and Drug Administration of their latest potential billion-dollar cash cow for pediatric use. Eleven Nigerian children died, five after receiving Pfizer’s product and six after receiving lower-than-normal doses of the older drug.
Pay close attention, parents. A Washington Post investigation reported that one 10-year-old girl suffering from meningitis was not taken off experimental Trovan and given standard, proven treatments by Pfizer’s clinical trial operators — when it was clear that her condition was deteriorating. One of her eyes froze. She lost strength and then died. A Nigerian doctor who supervised the studies for Pfizer admitted that his office had “backdated an approval letter” for the human trials, which “may have been written a year after the study had taken place.” Informed consent was undermined by language and education barriers.
One outraged African newspaper demanded that the government “tell us whether our children were used as guinea pigs and, if so, who committed such criminality and who is liable.” After years of protracted litigation with the pharmaceutical behemoth, Nigerian families reached a $75 million out-of-court settlement sealed with a confidentiality clause.
A separate whistleblower lawsuit filed by Pfizer’s former associate medical director for central research and Yale pediatric infectious disease specialist, Juan Walterspiel, alleged that the company fired him in retaliation for warning before and after the deadly Kano fiasco that the study methods were “improper and unsafe.” Walterspiel further claimed that Pfizer had bribed Nigerian officials to continue the study and cut safety corners because “stock options and bonuses (were) at stake.”
Pfizer tried to suppress Walterspiel’s allegations but was forced into a settlement after WikiLeaks published diplomatic cables showing that Pfizer had attempted to dig up dirt on a Nigerian prosecutor to bully him into dropping lawsuits by state and federal authorities in Africa.
A secret internal Nigerian government report, leaked years after it had been written, concluded that Pfizer violated international law by conducting an “illegal trial of an unregistered drug” and failing to inform children’s parents that the meningitis treatment was experimental. The government panel called the Trovan tragedy a “clear case of exploitation of the ignorant.”
If you think this corruption was all an anomaly or misunderstood altruism or “misinformation,” I encourage you to start doing your own homework before your child’s health and life become just another cost of doing Big Pharma business.
Search the internet and PubMed (while you still can) for “Pfizer,” “Celebrex,” “Bextra,” “Geodon,” “Zyvox,” “Lyrica” and “Neurontin.”
Find out more about why Pfizer paid the largest fine for health care fraud in American history ($2.3 billion) in 2009 to resolve allegations that it illegally caused false claims to be submitted to the government and paid kickbacks to health care providers to induce them to prescribe their products.
Learn more about the nearly 3,000 people who developed suicidal thoughts and severe psychological disorders after taking Pfizer’s smoking cessation drug, Chantix. Pfizer paid out nearly $300 million to settle those cases. Or the nearly 10,000 women who won claims of $1 billion after developing breast cancer linked to Pfizer’s Prempro hormone replacement therapy.
And just remember, parents, that the pandemic profiteers who stand to gain unprecedented, multibillion-dollar windfalls from endless vaccine boosters administered cradle to grave around the world have the most terrifying man-made immunity ever created: immunity from liability for their corner-cutting, life-endangering business model.
Michelle Malkin’s email address is [email protected]
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