Ethan A. Huff
October 29, 2014
The same drug manufacturers that stand to profit immensely from the sale of Ebola vaccines say they require full legal immunity from any potential lawsuits that might arise when people are harmed by various adverse effects from these “emergency” drugs.
GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) CEO Andrew Witty told World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Margaret Chan that his corporation, which is currently leading the way in producing Ebola vaccines, shouldn’t have to shoulder any of the burden of responsibility for their safety.
Witty maintains, in other words, that GSK should be allowed full access to the financial benefits associated with selling Ebola vaccines to the public, but with absolutely none of the risk. And his company and others will likely get what they want, since they hold remarkable sway in the political realm.
“I think it is reasonable that there should be some level of indemnification because the vaccine is essentially being used in an emergency situation before we’ve all had the chance to confirm its absolute profile,” Witty told BBC.
“That’s a situation where we would look for some kind of indemnification, either from governments or from multilateral agencies.”
Taxpayers funding development of high-profit drugs for which drug companies will not be held liable
There are currently no approved drugs or vaccines for Ebola, which is why GSK and others have been racing to pump new ones through the pipeline. This process, which normally takes five or six years to complete, is being done in about five or six months, hence concerns over the safety of the final products.
But the shady reality is that governments, not vaccine companies, are actually the ones financing the development of experimental Ebola drugs and vaccines. And they are doing so on the taxpayer dime, which means vaccine companies are not only developing their vaccines for free but also gaining access to unlimited profit potential driven by fear.