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What a Supriser! The not so independent Pfizer Adviser
The revolving pharmaceutical door
In a revelation that will come as a shock to no one (well no one who reads this newsletter anyway), a member of the Independent Data Safety Monitoring Board on Pfizer’s Phase 3 Covid-19 vaccine clinical trial was paid by…you guessed it…Pfizer.
Whilst cross-examining Dr Kathryn Edwards (a vaccinologist on the Safety Board) ICAN attorney, Aaron Siri, asked whether she had also been an adviser to Pfizer.
Yes, Sir, I have been an adviser to Pfizer and I’ve been working very, very closely with Pfizer, particularly with their Covid vaccines and going over lots of reactions and adverse events.
So, yes, I am working and being paid by Pfizer for my assessment of vaccine safety.
Aaron Siri asked Dr. Edwards to confirm that she is one of the only five members of the Safety Monitoring Board. He then reiterated what we are all thinking - “that’s meant to be an independent Safety Monitoring Board, correct?”. According to Dr. Edwards, it is independent.
Dr. Edwards tries to reassure Mr. Siri by telling him how very, very hard they’ve worked to do their job as comprehensively as possible.
Re-emphasising a number of times that the Safety Board, that the public rely on, should be independent, Mr. Siri asked Dr. Edwards to confirm that immediately before going on the Safety Board she was working as an adviser to Pfizer.
Pfizer pays me to evaluate the safety of the vaccines because I’m an expert. So, I do get paid to do the work that I’ve been doing but I’ve been doing the work conscientiously and comprehensively.
Mr. Siri repeated the question as to whether Dr. Edward worked for Pfizer immediately before going on the Safety Board.
Yes, Sir, but I think what you’re presuming is that because I’ve been an adviser, makes me on their dole or makes me going to say what they want me to say. That is not and has never been a part of my being. I say what I believe based on my expertise.
“Why have an independent Safety Monitoring Board, why not just use Pfizer employees?”, asked Mr. Siri. “Because we are independent”, came her unconvincing reply. I think it even began to dawn on her by the end.
A member of the independent Safety Monitoring Board, being paid by Pfizer to be independent is completely fine because she works very hard and is conscientious. Nothing to see here.
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