2 Sep – Weeks after Microsoft Founder Bill Gates donated $10 billion to develop and deliver vaccines to children in 2010, he told a cheering audience that “if we do a really great job on new vaccines, health care, reproductive health services, we could lower (the global population) by, perhaps, 10 or 15 percent.” By his estimates, that percentage would represent the lives of more than 650 million men, women and children around the world.
Last week, India’s Department of Health Research provided a glimpse of how the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, GAVI Alliance and other pharmaceutically-funded philanthropies target vulnerable children in poor countries.
In a report to the India Parliament, healthcare experts led by Committee Chair Shri Amar Singh reported last week that thousands of mostly illiterate families and adolescent children in the impoverished Khammam district of Andhra Pradesh were targeted without consent by the Program for Appropriate Technology in Health (PATH) in vaccine trials for the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV).
Reportedly funded by The Gates Foundation, the experiments provided for no investigations or reporting of known adverse drug reactions like anaphylaxis, syncope, convulsions, asthma, central demyelinating diseases, acute disseminated encephalomyelitis, Idiopathic Thrombopenia, Purpura, etc. According to the report, functionaries were “worried of bad publicity in case of side effects” and PATH provided for no urgent expert medical attention in case of serious adverse events whether known or unexpected.
The trials were conducted in the name of the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM), the official government program “to give it respectability and official endorsement.”
The Committee finds the entire matter very intriguing and fishy. The choice of countries and population groups; the monopolistic nature, at that point of time, of the product being pushed; the unlimited market potential and opportunities in the universal immunization progammes of the respective countries are all pointers to a well-planned scheme to commercially exploit a situation. Had PATH been successful in getting the HPV vaccine included in the universal immunization programme of the concerned countries, this would have generated windfall profit for the manufacturer(s) by way of automatic sale, year after year, without any promotional or marketing expenses. It is well known that once introduced into the immunization programme it becomes politically impossible to stop any vaccination. To achieve this end effortlessly without going through the arduous and strictly regulated route of clinical trials, PATH resorted to an element of subterfuge by calling the clinical trials as “Observational Studies” or “Demonstration Project” and various such expressions. Thus, the interest, safety and wellbeing of subjects were completely jeopardized by PATH by using self-determined and self-servicing nomenclature which is not only highly deplorable but a serious breach of law of the land. The Committee is not aware about the strategy followed by PATH in the remaining three countries viz. Uganda, Vietnam and Peru. The Government should take up the matter with the Governments of these countries through diplomatic channels to know the truth of the matter and take appropriate necessary action, accordingly. The Committee would also like to be apprised of the responses of these countries in the matter.
(See FULL REPORT)
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Tags: Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Bill Gates, GAVI Alliance, HPV, human papilloma virus, India, Khammam, Parliament, Program for Appropriate Technology in Health, Shri Amar Singh, vaccine trials