GSK Named As One Of 6 Big British Firms Who Avoided UK Corporation Tax In 2014


http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/six-british-multinationals-including-shell-vodafone-lloyds-banking-group-did-not-paid-any-a6844676.html

Six British multinationals ‘did not pay any UK corporation tax in 2014’

The same year, the six companies in the top 10 of the London stock exchange made a combined global profit of 30bn. 

Six of Britain’s 10 biggest multinationals, including Shell, British American Tobacco (BAT) and Lloyds Banking Group, paid no UK corporation tax in 2014, an investigation has claimed.

The reports come after Chancellor George Osborne received a backlash over calling a “sweetheart deal” with tech giant Google, which was allowed to pay £130m for back taxes over the last decade, a “success”.

Lloyds, brewer SABMiller and drugs company AstraZeneca were also among the six multinationals not to have paid any coropration tax in 2014, reports the Sunday Times.

The same year, the six British companies made a combined global profit of £30bn.

British Petroleum (BP) and drugs company Glaxo Smith Kline (GSK) refused to reveal how much UK corporation tax they paid, but GSK declared it had paid some tax in 2014. 

How does GSK get away with paying such low rates of corporation tax in the UK- despite claiming to be a UK company and despite the vast profits GSK generates globally?…
 
See this Guardian article (from 2009) for more…
 

 



The title to more than 40 GlaxoSmithKline trademarks went to a factory in Puerto Rico, including the trademark for the top-selling diabetes drug Avandia.

The trademark for the newly launched breast cancer drug Tykerb was assigned to Ireland, another low-tax regime, in 2005, followed there by the firm’s Sensodyne toothpaste brand in January 2008.

In 2007, the Puerto Rico trademarks, including Avandia, were shifted on to the firm’s Irish operation in Cork. Glaxo’s production was phased out at SB Pharmco Inc in Puerto Rico after quality control problems.

The value of Glaxo’s trademarks, their intellectual property, has been estimated to constitute as much as 5% of the eventual selling price of a drug. The company explains in its most recent annual report: “Profits arising from certain operations in … Puerto Rico and Ireland are accorded special status and are taxed at reduced rates compared with the normal rates of tax in these territories. The effect increased earnings per share by 4.9p in 2007, 7.2p in 2006 and 2.7p in 2005.”

Helen Jones, Glaxo’s head of tax, told us: “It is a widespread and totally accepted practice for global companies to license out intellectual property in return for royalties which reflect the value of work carried out by the holder.”

Glaxo pays on average more than 80% of its tax to overseas countries rather than to Britain. Last year as a result, although the British official tax rate has been 30%, and Glaxo’s worldwide profits were £7.4bn, the company’s actual UK tax bill was only £450m. This is still a hefty sum, and it is to Glaxo’s credit that it declares its UK tax charge (although it still does not disclose how much UK tax is actually paid over in cash each year). But it is only a tiny fraction of the pharmaceutical giant’s profits particularly relevant to the amount of Glaxo’s initial research and development carried out by British scientists in Britain.

Glaxo says it is natural that most of its tax is paid overseas, where it has more than 80% of its 100,000 employees. The company claims more than 90% of its turnover is “not related to the company’s UK subsidiaries”. It is not clear how much more UK tax would be paid if the intellectual property created in the UK had been kept in the UK.

Glaxo has been embroiled in tax rows around the world, not only in the UK, but in Canada, Japan, and most of all the US, where it makes the most lucrative sales. In 2006, it finally agreed to pay the US £1.7bn to settle a huge dispute over sales of the ulcer drug Zantac and others produced in the Puerto Rico factories. The US claimed it was being cheated out of its fair share of global tax.

Transnational companies do sometimes find themselves caught in the middle of arguments between different countries about their respective share of the tax cake.

The US is also currently demanding another $680m, which Glaxo disputes, over attempts to deduct loan interest from Glaxo profits. The company was locked in a lengthy fight with the British tax authorities, described as being over “transfer pricing” and “controlled foreign company” issues, in which Glaxo was accused of piling up too many profits abroad.

Glaxo said last year that there were “wide differences in positions” between the company and HM Revenue & Customs, which might lead to litigation. But in June, the disputes were suddenly resolved “with no material impact on the expected tax rate for the year”.

This followed shortly after meetings between Glaxo executives and Gordon Brown, and public threats that Glaxo might relocate to the Republic of Ireland.

In 2006, Glaxo paid US £1.7bn to settle dispute over sale of drugs produced in Puerto Rico

Depressed NHS Psychologist Says “Seroxat Made Me Feel Much Worse”


“…I tried hot baths, warm milk and camomile tea, everything. But nothing worked. The lack of sleep started taking its toll so I went to my GP who prescribed sleeping tablets. I took Mogadon (or Temazapam) but they were hopeless.

Another GP suggested antidepressants but Prozac did nothing and Seroxat made me feel even worse, much worse”…


for full article see link-

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/wellbeing/health-advice/i-was-an-nhs-psychologist—but-i-suffered-from-depression/

Confessions of a depressed psychologist: I’m in a darker place than my patients

46 per cent of NHS psychologists suffer from depression,  according to a survey by the British Psychological Society.
46 per cent of NHS psychologists suffer from depression,  according to a survey by the British Psychological Society. Credit: Getty Images

 

Last week it was reported that almost half of NHS psychologists should be on the couch themselves – an astonishing 46 per cent suffer from symptoms of depression, according to a survey by the British Psychological Society. Here, a psychologist with substantial experience offers a candid account of their own ordeal some years.

I am sitting opposite my sixth patient of the day. She is describing a terrible incident in her childhood when she was abused, sexually and physically, by both of her parents. I am nodding, listening and hoping I appear as if I appear normal. Inside, however, I feel anything but.

My head is thick – as if I’m thinking through porridge. I find myself tuning out and switching to autopilot. I put it down to tiredness – I haven’t slept well recently; last night I managed just two hours – but after the session I’m disappointed in myself. I’m worried that I might have let down my patient and I feel a bit of  a failure, but I tell no one.

One week later, I am in my car, driving across a bridge. Everything should be wonderful – my partner has a new job, my career as a psychologist in the NHS is going well, plus it’s almost Christmas, the second with our young child, and we’re readying ourselves for a move to London.

NHS psychologists can be vulnerable to depression themselves. 
NHS psychologists can be vulnerable to depression themselves. 

Yet, my mind is thick again. My only lucid thought is, “What if I turned the steering wheel and drove into the bridge support? What if I stuck my foot on the pedal and went straight off the edge? Wouldn’t that be so much easier?”

I grip the steering wheel and force myself to think, instead, of my partner and child. They are the two people who get me home safely.

It is the sort of anecdote I have heard from clients time and time again. I became a psychologist because I have a natural nurturing tendency – I never dreamt I would be the vulnerable one. But 10 years ago I found myself suffering from an extremely severe episode of depression that lasted three months, left me unable to work for six weeks and, at my very lowest, saw me contemplating suicide.

“Had I been going to weekly therapy at the time, my symptoms might have been spotted and nipped in the bud, before I suffered a full breakdown”

 

I’m certain part of the reason that I sank so low is that, even in the mental health profession, I felt that there was a stigma attached to depression – which meant, even though I had a supportive boss, that I was reticent to admit, or possibly even recognise, that I needed help.

At the time I saw up to six clients a day, five days a week, and my caseload was full of people with heavyweight problems: people who were sexually abused as children by their parents, brothers, sisters, uncles and grandparents; people with borderline personality disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder; people who had lived through horrific accidents, and whose operations had gone horribly wrong; asylum seekers who had been tortured. All in a day’s work.

Psychologists can see several serious cases every week. 
Psychologists can see several serious cases every week. 

 

I had never suffered from a mental illnesses myself and, with the exception of compulsory group counselling during my psychology training, I had never had therapy. But this was part of the problem.

As frontline professionals who listen to some of the most horrific and distressing experiences imaginable, it is surprising that counselling is not yet compulsory for all NHS clinical psychologists, as a means of supporting them.

Particularly as it is obligatory for psychotherapists and counsellors. Had I been going to weekly therapy at the time, my symptoms might have been spotted and nipped in the bud, before I suffered a full breakdown.

“Generally psychologists are so keen to help other people, there’s a danger that they can forget to look after themselves properly.”

 

It began very suddenly and, despite my training, I had no idea it was depression at all, at first – just that I was finding it difficult to sleep. I’d go to bed feeling tired after a long day in work but wake  at 1.30am , then lie there for the rest of the night, worrying.

I tried hot baths, warm milk and camomile tea, everything. But nothing worked. The lack of sleep started taking its toll so I went to my GP who prescribed sleeping tablets. I took Mogadon (or Temazapam) but they were hopeless. Another GP suggested antidepressants but Prozac did nothing and Seroxat made me feel even worse, much worse. 

Pharmaceutical Rape: An All Too Common Seroxat Horror Story…


http://davidhealy.org/pharmaceutical-rape-doctors-still-know-best/

Oliver’s story

Prior to taking Seroxat (Paxil), I had symptoms of tiredness and nausea. My general practitioner (GP) diagnosed me with anxiety and prescribed an anti-psychotic drug. Within 3 days I couldn’t eat or sleep due to severe agitation. I was vomiting, pacing the floors, and crying uncontrollably. My GP diagnosed this as an anxious state and started me on Seroxat. (During this time it was discovered that I was badly anemic and needed a hysterectomy due to severe blood loss. This was more than likely the cause of the original tiredness and nausea). Even though I had informed my GP of heavy bleeding, etc., it seemed easier for him to give my symptoms a label of anxiety and start me on a roller coaster of dangerous psychiatric drugs .

I remained on Seroxat for 6 years as every follow up I was just given more prescriptions. I decided to take myself off the drugs during my 6 years of use with disastrous consequences. I became obsessed with trying to hang myself and couldn’t function due to multiple horrendous symptoms, both mental and physical. Needless to say, I admitted myself to hospital as I had no idea what was happening to me. [I] felt better after Seroxat was reinstated.

I then decided to wean off again with instructions from my GP to taper for 9 months using alternate days[…]That was September 2004. I am now 8 years drug free and still living with damage incurred from taking Seroxat. The first 3 years of quitting were hell. Symptoms included anxiety, panic attacks, paranoia, agoraphobia, hives, itching, tingling, agitation, aggression, suicidal thoughts, homicidal thoughts, weak muscles, vision coordination issues, cognitive problems, dizziness, nausea, headaches, manic behaviour, racing thoughts, gastric upset, balance problems, burning sensations, heartbeat irregularities, palpitations, night sweats, insomnia, and total feelings of despair.

Eight years later to date I still have all these symptoms randomly. They come and they go, and although not as intense as the first years, it still gets pretty scary at times. Is this anything like prior to taking the drugs? No. I felt tired and nauseous. Was it worth taking this drug? No. The side effects of insomnia, muscle pain, blurred vision, weight gain, and feeling null and void of everything was worth nothing. Zero. Zilch. Will I ever recover? Who knows? GP’s offer no validation or support. Will anyone be accountable for the damage I have? No. Everything is denied.

—Rxisk.org. August 29, 2012

 

Is GSK An Accounting Manipulator?


A friend of mine (and fellow blogger) alerted me to this interesting analysis of GSK’s accounting performance over the years from this website :

http://www.gurufocus.com/term/mscore/LSE:GSK/Beneish%2BM-Score/GlaxoSmithKline%2BPLC

According to this website, they reckon it’s possible that GSK is a manipulator.

GSK accounts

 

 

Narcolepsy Boy Harmed From GSK Vaccine (Pandemrix-H1N1) Wins Damages


http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-somerset-35472926

A boy with a rare sleeping illness caused by a swine flu vaccine has won £120,000 in damages.

Josh Hadfield, 10, from Frome in Somerset, developed narcolepsy after receiving the Pandemrix vaccine six years ago.

He was awarded the money after appealing against the government which had initially refused to pay as he was not “severely disabled” enough.

His mother Caroline Hadfield said winning was a “huge relief”.

Families are entitled to £120,000 through the Vaccine Damage Payments Scheme, but only if they can prove “severe” disability.

Josh’s narcolepsy was triggered after he was given the H1N1 2009 influenza vaccine, known as Pandemrix, made by GlaxoSmithKline, in January 2010.

He also suffers from cataplexy, which affects muscle control, but he had shown no symptoms of the illness before being vaccinated.

Image caption In January Josh was “wired up” for a sleep study at St Thomas Hospital in London

Ms Hadfield said: “It will help secure Josh’s future. It’s just a shame we had to jump through this amount of hoops to get this far.”

She said her son was “coping” and had to have “one to two sleeps” during the school day.

“Josh has had to work incredibly hard because he misses lessons due to sleep and medical appointments,” she said.

She added he had also had a large weight gain caused by the condition and his medication.


The Hadfield’s solictor Suzanne Williams said she was “incredibly pleased” for Josh: “To succeed in the appeal, we had to satisfy the tribunal that he had a 60% disablement or more and they, in fact, concluded that he was 72% disabled based upon his present symptoms.

“They were also critical of the medical evidence provided by the secretary of state which they considered had not taken into account the whole picture.”

Pandemrix was most widely used in the UK during the 2009-10 flu pandemic and given to almost a million British children between six months and five years old.

Image copyright Caroline Hadfield

Image caption Josh’s mother Caroline Hadfield said his cataplexy sometimes caused “complete body collapse”

A spokesman for GlaxoSmithKline said: “We remain committed to carrying out additional research into the potential role of Pandemrix in the development of narcolepsy.

“We are also supporting ongoing work from other experts and organisations investigating reported cases of the condition.”

The vaccine, which is no longer used, has also been linked to narcolepsy in children from Finland, Sweden and Ireland.


Matthew Hill, Points West Health Correspondent

The link between Pandemrix and narcolepsy was first suggested by studies in Finland and Sweden where a review of 75 children who developed the disorder had a tenfold increased risk of the condition within six months of having the jab.

This was confirmed by another study in 2012 in Ireland showing a 13-fold increase in youngsters between five and 19 years of age.

There are about 100 other cases in the pipeline, so it seems the awarding of £120,000 to Josh Hadfield is only the start.


Narcolepsy facts

• Narcolepsy is a rare illness, with around 10 new cases per million people every year

• The main symptom is falling asleep suddenly

• The cause of narcolepsy remains unclear

• Some people may be predisposed to the condition by their genetics

• Suggested initial triggers include infections such as measles or mumps, accidents and the hormonal changes that take place in puberty

• It most often begins between the ages of 15 and 30


Josh Hadfield’s story was featured on BBC Radio 4’s File on 4. You can listen online or download the programme here.

Judge Denies GSK’s Motion to Dismiss Zofran Birth Defect Lawsuits


Judge Denies GSK’s Motion to Dismiss Zofran Birth Defect Lawsuits

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The federal judge overseeing lawsuits in the Zofran (ondansetron) anti-nausea drug multidistrict litigation in Massachusetts denied GlaxoSmithKline’s motion to dismiss the lawsuits. The judge sided with more than 200 families that sued GlaxoSmithKline for failing to warn them the morning sickness drug, Zofran, could cause birth defects.

Pharma giant GSK argued that all the federal Zofran lawsuits should be thrown out because plaintiffs’ allegations of failure to warn are based on numerous state laws, not federal, and the FDA would have denied a request for label change. United States District Judge F. Dennis Saylor IV ruled on January 22, 2016 that plaintiffs will be allowed to continue with discovery, for now.

Originally approved by the FDA in 1991 for nausea and vomiting after chemotherapy and surgery, doctors began using them off-label — a use not approved by the FDA — to treat morning sickness in pregnant women. Later, Zuplenz, a Zofran spin-off that dissolves without water, hit the market.

But studies linked the drug to severe birth defects and the families of babies born with defects after their mothers took the drug came forward to sue GSK for failing to warn.

GSK: FDA Denied Request for Label Change

The basis for GSK’s argument to dismiss lawsuits is federal preemption. This stems from a Supreme Court ruling that states a failure-to-warn claim can be overturned is a federal agency would not have required warnings. In this case, the drug company argued that the FDA’s denial of a citizen’s petition for a Zofran label change provided “clear evidence” that a label change was not necessary.

Plaintiffs fired back by claiming the Motion to Dismiss is “unprecedented and violates established federal law.” Judge Saylor sided with the plaintiffs citing a 2008 Supreme Court ruling that a citizen’s petition alone is not “clear evidence.”

For now, plaintiffs are allowed to enter discovery, the phase of litigation where both sides gather evidence from each other and make their case.

“The plaintiffs [should be given] some opportunity to develop the facts, whatever those facts may be,” Saylor said in his Order.

GSK Pled Guilty to Zofran Fraud, Paid $3 Billion

In 2012, the U.S. Department of Justice collected $3 billion in settlements from GSK after it sued the company for unlawful promotion and failure to report safety data on a number of its drugs, Zofran included. While the drug giant agreed to plead guilty, the DOJ said the claims settled were allegations only. At the time, the DOJ called it the largest healthcare fraud settlement in history.

According to the DOJ press release, the settlement “resolves allegations that GSK promoted certain forms of Zofran, approved only for post-operative nausea, for the treatment of morning sickness in pregnant women.”

The lawsuit also included allegations that GSK paid kickbacks to health care professionals to encourage them to prescribe these drugs.

Last modified: January 28, 2016

SSRI Anti-Depressants : Harmful Or Helpful?


“It is absolutely horrendous that they have such disregard for human lives.”
Professor Peter Gotzsche, Nordic Cochrane Centre

I’m blogging over 9 years (I started this blog in 2007), and in that time I have read tons of stuff about SSRI anti-depressants, psychiatry, and the pharmaceutical industry. I have focused my attention, in particular, upon the SSRI anti-depressant drug Seroxat, and the pharmaceutical company that manufactured it- GlaxoSmithKline (GSK). However, even before I started this blog, I had been educating myself about SSRI’s, the pharmaceutical industry, and ‘mental illness’ related issues. All in all, I have been reading, writing and researching about this stuff since at least 2001 (15 years). I had a particularly bad reaction to Seroxat, and I have no love for the pharmaceutical company who created it (GSK). I think GSK should have warned me about the dangers of Seroxat, and I believe that by suppressing information on Seroxat over the years, much harm was caused to me and to many many others.

The story of Seroxat is still as scandalous as ever.

I am particularly disturbed at how GSK behave generally too. They are an extremely sociopathic company, and they have absolutely no regard for patient well being, the law, or basic human values or ethics. They have been proven numerous times to be corrupt, devious and downright evil in how they behave. They have been fined numerous times for breaking ethical and legal codes in varous countries, however in their home turf of the UK it seems (because of the vast wealth that they bring there and the huge influence they have upon academia/industry etc) they are never brought to book. There are over 1000 blog posts on this blog detailing how GSK have corrupted doctors, the regulators and psychiatry, and I think my blog backs up my opinion on these subjects- ten fold. I had hoped, that by documenting GSK and Seroxat, others might not end up damaged by a pharmaceutical drug like Seroxat, I did it to bring awareness, it was that simple. I didn’t expect this blog to become the force that it has, I didn’t plan on being a blogger. I experienced an injustice from being prescribed the dangerous drug- Seroxat. I should have been warned, and I wasn’t. I met others who suffered because of Seroxat, and I felt compelled to do something about it- this blog spawned as a result of that impetus.

I have had some people e-mail me and thank me for saving their life, others have sent words of support and encouragement, or mentioned how my writing validated their experience, and I have received a lot of kindness because of my writing, and all of this has been extremely humbling for me, but none of this was planned.

(I have also had some psychos/stalkers/assholes and others who have pestered me from time to time- but those idiots will never stop me from helping others and bringing awareness).

Nevertheless, in all that time, and after digesting so much information about all this stuff, one of the most striking aspects of all this which I noticed is – just how polarized the debate about SSRI anti-depressants has been- over these years. There are those who swear blind that SSRI drugs are really helpful, and that the ‘risks’ are worth the (so called) ‘benefits’. There are people (usually biological psychiatrists) who claim that anti-depressants save lives, and they claim that SSRI anti-depressants are vital in the treatment of depression. Then there is an opposing camp who claim that these drugs are causing suicides, and that there risks far out weigh the benefits. I fall (like most reasonable people) somewhere in the middle…

I believe, or actually, in fact- I know (from my own experience, of almost 4 years on the SSRI Seroxat) that these drugs can be extremely harmful for a lot of people. I do understand that they can be somewhat helpful to others (perhaps very short term with close monitoring in extreme cases, or in a hospital setting), but I believe that the harms far out weigh the ‘benefits’. I also think that the so called ‘benefits’ are largely illusory, and often quite transient and subjective (if they exist at all). The benefit is an illusion just as much as the effect of any mind altering drug/substance is an illusion. Nevertheless, the only people who really know if these drugs are harmful or helpful are the people who take them. I don’t think that these drugs are helpful long term, nor do I think they should be prescribed as first line treatment.

These are potent, heavy, seriously addicting psychotropic/psychoactive/mind altering drugs; they are powerful and their affect on the mind is extremely difficult to predict in each individual. Some people will experience increased anxiety, increased suicidal ideation, hallucinations, distortions in their reality/perceptions/personality etc, and others might not experience these effects too badly. Most will experience some, or variations of these effects over time, and the longer you’re on them the more toxic you become. Withdrawal from them is often horrific too. However, most people will experience the physical side effects of nightmares, sweating profusely, stomach problems, irritability, tension, sexual side effects, nervous system side effects etc. The physical side effects in themselves can be extremely debilitating and disturbing. These drugs are quite toxic physically and they have been way too over-prescribed to too many people, mostly without adequate monitoring or informed consent.

It seems to me that those who defend the drugs without question are usually biological psychiatrists with a vested interest (either directly through pharmaceutical affiliation or indirectly through other means of the psychiatric profession) in keeping knowledge of the harms of these drugs as suppressed as possible.

The problem facing biological psychiatrists who defend the use of SSRI’s -almost evangelically – is- the cat is now fully out of the bag. You can’t defend these drugs in an extreme quasi-religious manner anymore without coming across as some kind of irrational zealot nutcase, because even the most eminent drug experts (the Cochrane group for example) now agree that there are serious issues with these drugs and in fact these drugs are very likely causing more harm than good. It has taken a few decades for the truth to finally become known, but the widespread consensus seems to be leaning towards the fact that these drugs are causing serious harm to a considerable number of people, and they have been for a very long time.

There will always be some biological psychiatrists who (seemingly desperate to hang on to some semblance of power and prestige in their own insecure minds) will defend these drugs like they are some kind of sacred religious iconography. They deem any criticism of the drugs as close to some kind of blasphemy. They imagine that if the drugs they dish out are undermined in any way, they themselves will be undermined also, and their beliefs and ideology will be debased as a result.  With their ego, their profession and their world view under threat of extinction from the truth, some of these psychiatrists can get very irrational and volatile indeed. Their egos just cannot take this perceived assault so they continue to deny despite the evidence rendering their denials redundant and ridiculous, because denial is all they have left as a defense.

Unfortunately, the ship of reason has sailed, and those psychiatrists are not on it.

These hell-fire and brimstone biological psychiatrists are few and far between nowadays, as most ‘clever’ psychiatrists are slowly starting to change their own discourse about SSRI’s so as to make it appear that they were never fully behind the widespread use of them in the first place (most of them really were, but at least some of them have the appearance of decency-or ‘devious intelligence’- to accept the truth and follow the tide of consensus).

It must be very difficult for some psychiatrists to accept that the drugs which they have been peddling for a very long time have perhaps harmed (and in some cases killed) many of their patients. It understandable what a hard pill of truth this might be to swallow (pardon the pun) for some of these individuals but the truth is self evident now. However continuing to deny the realities of the side effects of these drugs, and the harms that they caused, and continue to cause- is not acceptable.

Defending the drugs as a means of protecting the psychiatric ideological paradigm -at the expense of patients’ lives and public health- is utterly reprehensible- in my opinion.

There have been a flurry of articles, in the media recently, about the side effects of SSRI’s and much debate has ensued. However, instead of writing my opinion on each, I think it might be best to combine them all in one post.

The latest damning article about SSRI’s and their dangers comes from the Telegraph UK. The Telegraph article is based on a study from the Nordic Cochrane group. The Cochrane group are among the most respected (and widely cited) academics in the field of medicine.

Here are some excerpts from the article:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/health/news/12126146/Antidepressants-can-raise-the-risk-of-suicide-biggest-ever-review-finds.html#disqus_thread

“…Antidepressants can raise the risk of suicide, biggest ever review finds

Antidepressant use doubles the risk of suicide in under 18s and the risks to adults may have been seriously underestimated, researchers found

Antidepressants can raise the risk of suicide, the biggest ever review has found, as pharmaceutical companies were accused of failing to report side-effects and even deaths linked to the drugs.

 

An analysis of 70 trials of the most common antidepressants – involving more than 18,000 people – found they doubled the risk of suicide and aggressive behaviour in under 18s.

 

Although a similarly stark link was not seen in adults, the authors said misreporting of trial data could have led to a ‘serious under-estimation of the harms.’

For years families have claimed that antidepressant medication drove their loved ones to commit suicide, but have been continually dismissed by medical companies and doctors who claimed a link was unproven.

The review – the biggest of its kind into the effects of the drugs – was carried out by the Nordic Cochrane Centre and analysed by University College London (UCL) who today endorse the findings in an editorial in the British Medical Journal (BMJ).

After comparing clinical trial information to actual patient reports the scientists found pharmaceutical companies had regularly misclassified deaths and suicidal events in people taking anti-depressants to “favour their products”.

Experts said the review’s findings were “startling” and said it was “deeply worrying” that clinical trials appear to have been misreported….”

Tarang Sharma of the Nordic Cochrane Centre, Copenhagen, Denmark admitted: “The analysis suggests that clinical study reports, on which decisions about market authorisation are based, are likely to underestimate the extent of drug related harms.”

Four deaths were misreported by one unnamed pharmaceutical company, who claimed they had occurred after the trials had stopped.

One patient strangled himself unexpectedly after taking venlafaxine but because he survived for five days, he was excluded from the results because it was claimed he was no longer on the trial while he was dying in hospital.”


 

Leonie Fennell is a dedicated patient advocate, and genuine mental health activist, who has done stellar work in bringing awareness to the dangers of SSRI medications (her focus is on the SSRI Cipramil in particular, and Lundbeck the pharma who makes it). Her latest post explores some of the themes which I have mentioned in my post thus far. You can read her full post here, but in the meantime here are some very poignant excerpts from it :

“...Yesterday’s BMJ article that found antidepressants double the risk of suicide and aggression in young people, made headlines worldwide. From America, Australia to india, caution was advised when prescribing in this age bracket. Not so in Ireland. The one newspaper article referring to the BMJ article can be found in today’s Irish Examiner here, entitled ‘Drug link to child suicide queried by expert’. So did it warn prescribers of the suicide and aggression risks, advise stricter guidelines or just advise caution when prescribing to children? None of the latter. Instead the Irish Examiner published an article allowing Professor Patricia Casey to question the findings of the Nordic Cochrane Centre..”


Both the Cochrane group’s report on the doubling of aggression side effects, and suicidal side effects etc, and Leonie’s excellent commentary upon it, is no surprise to me because I experienced these side effects directly from GSK’s notorious Seroxat SSRI. I know just how dangerous these drugs are. Leonie Fennell also knows just how dangerous these drugs are because Cipramil killed her son Shane, and tragically also Cipramil caused Shane to be violent- and as a result of this side effect of SSRI induced violence came the death of Sebastian Creane too. Anyone on an SSRI could end up in Shane’s altered state of mind, I’ve been there, and I know of many others, who have expressed similar experiences. These drugs can make people violent and volatile, they can literally snap your mind. Shane should have been warned and monitored properly for emerging suicidal ideation/akathisa/aggression etc. He wasn’t warned, and neither was his family, and the tragedy that followed could have been prevented had they been.

Although I have been drawing attention to these issues for a long time, it is heartening to see my views legitimized by studies from a group as prestigious and respected as the Nordic Cochrane group. It’s high time the public knew just how dangerous these drugs are for all age groups. The studies highlighting the dangers in adolescents and the young show very clear dangers, however this is the proverbial ‘canary in the coal-mine’. All ages, adults and younger, can experience the same deadly side effects of SSRI’s.

I’m not a huge fan of Peter Hitchens (I preferred his brother- Christopher), however he has been good at covering the dangers of SSRI’s and his latest article on the Cochrane study on SSRI’s pulls no punches in that regard.

http://hitchensblog.mailonsunday.co.uk/2016/01/time-for-some-serious-thought-about-antidepressants.html

Here are some excerpts:

28 January 2016 4:26 PM

Time for Some Serious Thought about ‘Antidepressants’

I expect to have more to say about this, but today’s BMJ? UCL/ Nordic Cochrane Centre analysis of research on ‘antidepressants’ should surely change the terms on which we debate this subject.

I should say that all intelligent people should draw lessons about the difference between what they think is happening, and what is actually happening,  from two major Hollywood films – The Big Short’ and ‘Spotlight’. In both cases – the sub-prime mortgage disaster and the widespread unpunished sexual abuse of children by priests – complacency prevented serious concern for years. In both cases the alarm was raised by outsiders, and most people refused to believe what was being said.

I believe that psychiatric medication contains a similar problem, which in a few years, everyone will acknowledge as fact. But at the moment, it is still difficult to raise it without being accused of being a crank. Complacency rules.

For some years now I have been more or less begging my readers to obtain the book ‘Cracked’ by James Davies’ and to study two clearly-written and straightforward articles on the subject by Dr Marcia Angell, a distinguished American doctor, and no kind of crank, in the New York Review of Books. I link to them (yet again) here. They are devastating, not least because of their measured understatement. The alleged scientific theory (the Serotonin theory) which underpins the prescribing of such drugs is, to put it mildly, unproven. The drug companies themselves have kept secret (until compelled to disgorge them by FoI requests) research results which suggest their pills are, again to put it mildly, not that effective.

http://www.nybooks.com/articles/2011/06/23/epidemic-mental-illness-why/

http://www.nybooks.com/articles/2011/07/14/illusions-of-psychiatry/

Dr Angell’s articles are themselves reviews of important recent books on the subject.

I have also drawn attention to the huge sums of money involved, and to a recent case in which a major drug company was fined *three billion dollars* for (amongst other things) mis-selling ‘antidepressants’.

http://www.theguardian.com/business/2012/jul/03/glaxosmithkline-fined-bribing-doctors-pharmaceuticals


Hitchens is astute in his analysis of the Cochrane study. He draws attention to what I have been drawing attention to on my blog for 9 years. The reason why these drugs have been so widely promoted boils down to one thing- money.

The pharmaceutical industry makes billions on them, that’s why they have got away with all these years of cover-ups, lies, death and destruction. Psychiatry would lose its status (and its profitability) as a ‘legitimate medical specialty’ without the drugs- that’s why they deny the problems- even in the face of overwhelming evidence against their use. For psychiatry – raising awareness of the dangers undermines the profession… and we all know how highly paid some psychiatrists are don’t we?…

Nobody likes their bread and butter threatened do they?…

Nope..

Money, it’s a crime
Share it fairly but don’t take a slice of my pie
Money, so they say
Is the root of all evil today
But if you ask for payrise it’s no surprise
That they’re giving none away
Away, away, way
Away, away, away

(Pink Floyd – Money)

Is Glaxo Looking To Replace Andrew Witty As CEO?


GlaxoSmithKline begins search for new ceo to succeed embattled Sir Andrew Witty as investors call for drugs giant to be split up

GlaxoSmithKline has kicked off the search for a chief executive to succeed embattled Sir Andrew Witty.

With the drugs giant facing pressure from powerful shareholders, it is understood the board has started succession planning.

Witty, who was paid £3.9million in 2014, joined Glaxo in 1985 and took over as chief executive in May 2008 after Jean-Pierre Garnier retired.

Under pressure:  GlaxoSmithKline boss is looking for a new boss to replace Sir Andrew Witty (pictured)

Under pressure:  GlaxoSmithKline boss is looking for a new boss to replace Sir Andrew Witty (pictured)

His future is in the hands of chairman Sir Philip Hampton, the former Royal Bank of Scotland chairman who took the helm in May.

Original Seroxat (Paxil) Study 329 Authors’ Belligerent And Glib Response To Damning Seroxat Child Suicide Study In The BMJ


http://www.bmj.com/content/351/bmj.h4320/rr-27

Paroxetine treatment in youth does not appear to significantly differ from other SSRIs in the risk of suicidal ideation or attempts and whether SSRIs increase or decrease completed suicide remains an open question

In the abstract we stated “Conclusions: Paroxetine is generally well tolerated and effective for major depression in adolescents.” In this sample and with the state of knowledge at the time, it was justified and appropriate.

Sincerely,

Martin B. Keller, M.D.
Boris Birmaher, M.D.
Gabrielle A. Carlson, MD
Gregory N. Clarke, Ph.D.
Graham J. Emslie, M.D.
Harold Koplewicz, M.D.
Stan Kutcher, M.D.
Neal Ryan, M.D.
William H. Sack, M.D.
Michael Strober, Ph.D.

Regular readers of this blog would be very much aware of the recent RIAT re-analysis of GSK’s Seroxat (Paxil) study 329 published in the BMJ last year. This study was damning not just for GSK and for Seroxat, but it was also damning because it showed up the original authors as little more than charlatans. The original ‘authors’ were not so much ‘authors’ in the traditional sense of the word, because they basically just sold their names to the study- most of it was written by a PR pharma ghost writer  (Sally Laden)- hired by GSK.

However, because the ‘authors’ were big names in medicine and psychiatry at the time, GSK’s marketing department used them so that they could push Seroxat (Paxil) to under 18’s. Seroxat should never ever have been prescribed to kids (and in my opinion Seroxat is just as dangerous in the adult population). Many kids died from Seroxat induced suicide, some self harmed from it, some committed acts of violence against themselves and others,  and many were severely damaged (and this happened to adults too).

So you would think, considering the immense harm that this study has done, and considering the agony that Seroxat has caused many tens of thousands of people globally (adults and children)- that the original authors would be ashamed that their names were used in this manner wouldn’t you?  You’d think that they would be utterly appalled to learn that kids died from Seroxat, and you’d think that they would attempt to retract this study from the academic record, and you’d think that- they would be deeply sorry that they were so easily led by a greedy, sociopathic drug company, wouldn’t you? You’d think they’d care..

But, no..

The authors aren’t really concerned about any of this at all…

It seems, judging by their glib, belligerent and arrogant response- in the BMJ- that the study authors really couldn’t give a damn at all..

Why are we surprised?

They did, after all, lend their names to the original fraudulent study.. so why wouldn’t they lend their names to a rebuttal?

But now, in defending the indefensible it seems the only traits I can see remaining in the ‘characters’ of these ‘key opinion leaders’, are ones that resemble stone cold sociopaths.

I find it extremely disturbing how these academics seem to be more concerned with smearing the RIAT authors reputations, playing word games, and muddying the waters with other nonsense, than the stark fact that- a corrupted study they lent their names to- ended up being used to drug kids (literally) to death…

We’re talking about a drug which makes kids kill themselves…isn’t that f*cked up?

I was 21 when I was prescribed Seroxat, and it was a horrible experience..

It was horrendous…  I can’t imagine what it would be like for a child..

You can’t defend the indefensible…

Only psychopaths, serial killers and sociopaths would attempt to do that…Study 329 was a disgusting example of ‘doctors’ and psychiatrists selling their reputations to amoral drug companies, there is no defending it..

It was abhorrent..


GSK scientists indicted for trade secret theft


GSK scientists indicted for trade secret theft

 

Two scientists working at GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) in Pennsylvania, US, have been indicted for conspiracy to commit fraud and allegedly stealing confidential information related to its biopharmaceutical products. The indictment names five people, including scientists Yu Xue and Lucy Xi. If convicted of all charges, each defendant faces a range of punishments, including fines and possible prison terms.

The indictment claims that Xue and Xi used e-mail and USB drives to transmit information about GSK’s procedures for researching, developing, and manufacturing biopharmaceutical products designed to treat cancer or other diseases. Xue and two of the other defendants had formed a company in China called Renopharma in July 2012, allegedly to market and sell the stolen trade secret information.