Projections of mortality and burden of disease to 2030

Revised global and regional projections of mortality and burden of disease by cause for 2005, 2015 and 2030 are now available. ( (2006))

Britain on the couch: We are in the grip of an epidemic. But are drugs the only answer? (...)

The World Health Organisation has a tendency to talk about the widespread and undiagnosed levels of depression internationally, but it also has close links with the pharmaceutical industry ( 8.10.2006)

- En ny sykdom hvert år ( 23.8.2007)

Letter to WHO Director General about conflict of interest disclosure ( (June 2007))

WHO’s Department of Medicines Policy and Standards

“We are aware that corrupt practices take place in various forms in both high- and low-income countries,” says Dr. Guitelle Baghdadi-Sabeti of WHO’s Department of Medicines Policy and Standards. ( 6.1.2007)

- WHO må forsvare pasienters interesse, ikke industriens

WHO must defend patients' interests, not industry (WHO må forsvare pasienters interesse, ikke industriens)
Lancet 2007; 369:974-975 (24 March)
Is WHO's Director-General, Margaret Chan, more concerned about the needs of patients or the interests of industry? Addressing an audience in Bangkok in February, she stressed the need to negotiate with drug companies over access to medicines, and that the use of compulsory licensing to import and manufacture generic versions of patented drugs must be “balanced”.1 (...)

(Anm: Global rules for global health: why we need an independent, impartial WHO BMJ 2014;348:g3841 (Published 18 June 2014).)

(Anm: WHO director issues thinly veiled rebuke of FDA critics. (…) Speaking at a conference in Seattle on Wednesday, Dr. Margaret Chan2 warned against loosening the rules governing the safety and effectiveness data that drug companies must supply to win marketing approval from the FDA. “We must not let anything, including economic arguments or industry pressure, lower our scientific standards or compromise our integrity. This is an absolute duty,” Chan said in a speech at the University of Washington. Her remarks were circulated by the WHO on Thursday. ( 13.2.2017).)

(Anm: WHO calls for tax on sugary drinks to tackle child obesity. BMJ 2016;352:i475 (Published 25 January 2016).)

(Anm: EU og Verdens helseorganisasjon i bitter glyfosat-strid. WHOs ekspertgruppe truer med å avlyse møter med EUs mattilsyn, med mindre de sletter WHO-kritikk fra sine nettsider. (…) I november kontret EUs mattilsyn (EFSA) med sin egen rapport om at det ikke finnes grunnlag for å påvise kreftfare og rettet kritikk mot IARC sine.)

-  Leder. Den tredje globale pasientsikkerhetsutfordringen: å takle legemiddelrelaterte skader.

(Anm: Leder. Den tredje globale pasientsikkerhetsutfordringen: å takle legemiddelrelaterte skader. Editorial. The third global patient safety challenge: tackling medication-related harm. The World Health Organization (WHO) has announced its third global patient safety challenge,1 which aims to reduce the global burden of iatrogenic medication-related harm by 50% within five years. The intention is to match the global reach and impact of the two earlier global patient safety challenges: Clean care is safer care and Safe surgery saves lives.2,3 The third challenge, Medication without harm, invites health ministers to initiate national plans addressing four domains of medication safety: engaging patients and the public; medication as products; education, training and monitoring of health-care professionals; and systems and practices of medication management. This challenge also commits WHO to using its convening and coordinating powers to drive forward a range of global actions on medication safety.4 Bull World Health Organ 2017;95:546–546A.)

(Anm: Feilmedisineringer og feilbehandlinger (medisinske feil) (

(Anm: Diagnostisering, feildiagnostisering, overdiagnostisering og pasientsikkerhet (

(Anm: Norsk pasientskadeerstatning (NPE). (

- Styring og korrupsjon innen legemiddelindustrisektoren: Årsaker og konsekvenser.

(Anm: Styring og korrupsjon innen legemiddelindustrisektoren: Årsaker og konsekvenser. Korrupsjon, forstått som "misbruk av betrodd makt til privat fortjeneste", regnes som en av de største barrierer for menneskelig utvikling og økonomisk vekst. (…) Det er anslått at det i helsesektoren årlig brukes 5,3 billioner dollar over hele verden på å levere helsetjenester, likevel går så mye som 6 prosent eller 300 milliarder dollar tapt grunnet korrupsjon og feil ifølge Verdens helseorganisasjon (WHO).) (Governance and Corruption in the Pharmaceutical Sector: Causes and Consequences. Corruption, understood as “the misuse of entrusted power for private gain,” is considered to be one of the biggest barriers to human development and economic growth. (…) In the health sector annually, an estimated $5.3 trillion is spent worldwide on providing health services, yet as much as 6 percent or $300 billion USD is lost to corruption and errors according to the World Health Organization.) ( - Friday, September 29, 2017).) (PDF)

(Anm: Legemiddelindustrien (Big Pharma) (

(Anm: WHO (World Health Organization) om legemiddelinformasjon og legemiddelforsøk etc. (

(Anm: Statlig legemiddelkontroll (Statens legemiddelverk etc.) (

(Anm: WHO-inspektør: Der mangler penge til lægemiddelinspektioner. Efter en stor sag med datafusk hos en indisk kontraktforskningsvirksomhed peger WHO-inspektør på, at politikerne ikke afsætter penge nok til lægemiddelinspektioner. Han arbejder nu på at udvikle et system, som kan afsløre potentielt snyd eller påfaldende data på langdistance. ( 9.8.2016).)

- Bloomberg: Firmaer fra PepsiCo til Pfizer har en interesse i hvem som leder WHO

(Anm: Businesses From PepsiCo to Pfizer Have a Stake in Who Leads WHO - UN health agency shapes policy on pandemics to pharmaceuticals - New director-general to be elected at May 23 meeting in Geneva. The World Health Organization’s 194 member-states will vote for a new director-general next week, choosing a doctor to lead the planet’s top technical agency on all matters health.  ( 18.5.2017).)

(Anm: Habilitet (integritet) (

- En av Afrikas verste diktatorer utnevnes til WHO-ambassadør: - Det må være en vits. Verdens helseorganisasjon (WHO) har utnevnt Zimbabwes president Robert Mugabe til goodwill-ambassadør. Det vekker sterke reaksjoner, også fra norske myndigheter.

(Anm: En av Afrikas verste diktatorer utnevnes til WHO-ambassadør: - Det må være en vits. Verdens helseorganisasjon (WHO) har utnevnt Zimbabwes president Robert Mugabe til goodwill-ambassadør. Det vekker sterke reaksjoner, også fra norske myndigheter. (Dagbladet): En av verdens mest utskjelte statsledere, 93 år gamle Robert Mugabe, har fått det ærefulle oppdraget som goodwill-ambassadør for Verdens helseorganisasjon (WHO). Despoten har siden han først ble omtalt som en frigjøringshelt og et stort ledertalent på 1980-tallet, utviklet seg til å bli en av Afrikas verste diktatorer - og han har en rekke ganger blitt anklaget for omfattende brudd på menneskerettighetene. WHO-sjef Tedros Ghebreyesus, som selv kommer fra Etiopia, er av en annen oppfatning og kunngjorde denne uka at Mugabe har takket ja til en forespørsel om å være goodwill-ambassadør, skriver NTB. Ghebreyesus hyller Mugabes helsepolitikk og fastholder at 93-åringen vil kunne «øve innflytelse på sine likemenn i regionen». ( 20.10.2017).)

(Anm: After Making Mugabe a ‘Good-Will Ambassador,’ W.H.O. Chief Is ‘Rethinking’ It. The World Health Organization’s decision to name President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe a “good-will ambassador” has provoked outrage from medical professionals, rights groups, opposition leaders and others who took to social media to call it an “insult” and “a sick joke.” The 93-year-old African leader, who has long faced United States sanctions over his government’s human rights violations, received the title in Montevideo, Uruguay, this past week from the W.H.O.’s director general, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. (…) On Twitter, Mr. Neuer urged him to reverse course on Mr. Mugabe: “@DrTedros I urge you to cancel your appointment of Mugabe as W.H.O. ‘good-will ambassador’ — he ruined Zimbabwe’s health.” In a tweet later on Saturday, Dr. Tedros wrote: “I’m listening. I hear your concerns. Rethinking the approach in light of WHO values. I will issue a statement as soon as possible.”  ( 21.10.2017).)

- WHO open to “lobbying” by business.

(Anm: WHO open to “lobbying” by business. The World Health Organization has been warned that it was now open to undue influence from commercial interests after member states agreed a framework for its relations with industry and other bodies. BMJ 2016;353:i3134 (Published 02 June 2016).)

(Anm: Lobbyisme (lobbying - lobbyvirksomhet - lobbyregister - interessekonflikter - korrupsjon) (

(Anm: EU-kommisjonen (Den europeiske unions høyeste organ) (

(Anm: WHO-inspektør: Der mangler penge til lægemiddelinspektioner. Efter en stor sag med datafusk hos en indisk kontraktforskningsvirksomhed peger WHO-inspektør på, at politikerne ikke afsætter penge nok til lægemiddelinspektioner. Han arbejder nu på at udvikle et system, som kan afsløre potentielt snyd eller påfaldende data på langdistance. ( 9.8.2016).)

(Anm: Statlig legemiddelkontroll (Statens legemiddelverk etc.) (

- Kommentar. Er lobbyregister et framskritt for åpenheten? (- Høyre mener at habilitetsverket er godt nok.) (- KrFs Geirmund Lykke mener det blir for mye byråkrati, særlig for de pliktoppfyllende som vil føre opp alle samtaler og henvendelser de har. Han har også en annen bekymring. De som vil lure systemet, klarer det fint. De bare lar være å føre opp sine henvendelser. Hele systemet er jo basert på tillit.)

(Anm Kommentar. Er lobbyregister et framskritt for åpenheten? Saken om "grønn strek" har ført til at Trondheim kommune nå innfører et lobbyregister. For alle som er opptatt av åpenhet, høres det bra ut. Men kan det gi falsk trygghet? Som første kommune i landet har Trondheim innført et lobbyregister. I registeret skal bystyremedlemmene føre oversikt over møter de har med lobbyister og organisasjoner. Først var det snakk om et lobbyforbud i Trondheim, men det er ikke lovlig. Nå er det etiske regelverket innskjerpet i tillegg til at lobbyregisteret er innført. (…) Motargumentene mot et lobbyregister er mange. Lobbyregisteret ble ikke vedtatt enstemmig. Høyre mener at habilitetsverket er godt nok. KrFs Geirmund Lykke mener det blir for mye byråkrati, særlig for de pliktoppfyllende som vil føre opp alle samtaler og henvendelser de har. Han har også en annen bekymring. De som vil lure systemet, klarer det fint. De bare lar være å føre opp sine henvendelser. Hele systemet er jo basert på tillit. (…) Det blir interessant å se hvordan Trondheim utformer sitt register, og hvordan det vil fungere. Er det vellykket, kan flere ønske å følge etter. ( 3.10.2017).)

(Anm: Lobbyisme (lobbying - lobbyvirksomhet - lobbyregister - interessekonflikter - korrupsjon) (

(Anm: PR-rådgivere, PR-byråer og PR-hjelp (PR-bransjen) (Spindoktorer) (

- The International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) believes there is an ethical obligation to responsibly share data generated by interventional clinical trials because trial participants have put themselves at risk.

(Anm: Editorials. a. Annals of Internal Medicine, American College of Physicians, 190 N. Independence Mall West, Philadelphia, PA 19106, United States of America (USA). b. World Association of Medical Editors, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India. c. Ugeskrift for Laeger (Danish Medical Journal), Hvidovre, Denmark. d. PLOS Medicine, San Francisco, USA. e. The Lancet, London, England. f. Journal of Korean Medical Science, Seoul, Republic of Korea. g. Ethiopian Journal of Health Sciences, Jimma, Ethiopia. h. Bulletin of the World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland. i. The British Medical Journal, London, England. j. New Zealand Medical Journal, Wellington, New Zealand. k. Revista Médica de Chile (Medical Journal of Chile), Santiago, Chile. l. New England Journal of Medicine, Boston, USA. m. Journal of the American Medical Association, Chicago, USA. n. Deutsches Ärzteblatt (German Medical Journal), Cologne, Germany. o. Library Operations, National Library of Medicine, Bethesda, USA.Data sharing statements for clinical trials: a requirement of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (Bulletin of the World Health Organization 2017;95:482-483.).)

- Rammer for engasjement med ikke-statlige aktører - Rapport fra sekretariatet

Framework of engagement with non-State actors - Report by the Secretariat (EB134/8 134th session 8 January 2014)
3. The overall objective of WHO’s engagement with non-State actors is to work towards the fulfilment of the Organization’s mandate by making better use of non-State actors’ resources (including knowledge, expertise, commodities, personnel and finances). To do this the Organization will have to make the best use of the input from non-State actors in WHO’s governance and consultations, and to engage in dialogue with non-State actors on how they can improve their activities so as to better protect and promote health.

4. WHO’s engagement with non-State actors is guided by five overarching principles. Any engagement should:
(a) demonstrate a clear benefit to public health
(b) respect the intergovernmental nature of WHO
(c) support and enhance the scientific and evidence-based approach that underpins WHO’s work
(d) be actively managed so as to reduce any form of risk to WHO (including conflicts of interest)
(e) be conducted on the basis of transparency, openness and inclusiveness. (…)

28. Discussions that have taken place during meetings of governing bodies and informal consultations, including those held by the Director-General’s special envoy on WHO’s engagement with non-State actors, have clearly indicated the need for further consultations among Member States on the future modalities of WHO’s engagement with non-State actors. The outcome of the Board’s deliberations will feed into these further consultations. In parallel with these consultations, the Director-General will strengthen the management of engagement, as noted above. In addition, the following adjustments to the practices of implementing the current policy regarding nongovernmental organizations are proposed for immediate application. (…)

(Anm: Legemiddelindustrien (Big Pharma) (

(Anm: USAs mest beundrede lovbryter. (America's Most Admired Lawbreaker ) I løpet av 20 år utviklet Johnson & Johnson et kraftig legemiddel, promoterte det ulovlig overfor barn og eldre, skjulte bivirkninger og tjente milliarder av dollar. Dette er innsidehistorien. (Over the course of 20 years, Johnson & Johnson created a powerful drug, promoted it illegally to children and the elderly, covered up the side effects and made billions of dollars. This is the inside story.) ( 8.10.2015).)

- Fri tilgang til forskningsresultater?

(Anm: Fri tilgang til forskningsresultater? (forskningsdata) (

(Anm: The hidden side of clinical trials | Sile Lane | TEDxMadrid (

(Anm: Forvaltningsmakt og kunnskapspolitikk. Sammendrag. Helse- og omsorgsdepartementet benekter at de ønsker å styre forskninga i underliggende etater, og ser ingen problemer med at forskninga ligger under forvaltninga. Rus & Samfunn 05 / 2016 (Volum 9) Side: 33-35.)

(Anm: Frie forskere eller maktens lakeier? Abstrakt. Det går et skisma gjennom den samfunnsvitenskapelige rusforskningen. Ved første øyekast er det vanskelig å forstå hvorfor. Rus & Samfunn 05 / 2016 (Volum 9) Side: 36-40.)

(Anm: Nesten halvparten av alle studier som er gjennomført av store sponsorer i det siste tiåret er upublisert (Nearly half of all trials run by major sponsors in past decade are unpublished.) BMJ 2016;355:i5955 (Published 04 November 2016).)

(Anm: Who's not sharing their trial results? (

(Anm: Transparency for patients: How much is too much? ( 11.10.2016).)

(Anm: Parlamentsmedlemmer hører at kliniske forsøk er byråkratiske, uklare, og forvirrende for forskere og pasienter. (…) "Det har vært en rekke kjente tilfeller hvor godkjente legemidler er basert på ufullstendig informasjon — og hvor den informasjonen som senere er stilt til rådighet har vist at legemidlet er ineffektivt eller faktisk skadelig.  (Clinical trials are bureaucratic, opaque, and offputting to researchers and patients, MPs hear.) BMJ 2013;346:f1711 (14 March 2013).)

(Anm: Statlig legemiddelkontroll (Statens legemiddelverk etc.) (

(Anm: Statlig hvitvasking av legemiddelinformasjon (Tidsskr Nor Legeforen 2010; 130:368 (25.2.2010).)

- WHO anklages for råflotte reisevaner. (- Det årlige reisebudsjettet til WHOs 7.000 ansatte er på nærmere 1,7 milliarder kroner, viser interne notater nyhetsbyrået AP har fått tilgang til.)

WHO anklages for råflotte reisevaner 22.5.2017
Verdens helseorganisasjon (WHO) anklages for å bruke mer på luksusreiser og dyre hotellrom, enn på å bekjempe aids, malaria og tuberkulose.

Det årlige reisebudsjettet til WHOs 7.000 ansatte er på nærmere 1,7 milliarder kroner, viser interne notater nyhetsbyrået AP har fått tilgang til.

I fjor benyttet WHO til sammenligning rundt 600 millioner kroner på å bekjempe aids, drøyt 500 millioner kroner på å bekjempe malaria og omtrent det samme på å bekjempe tuberkulose.

Reisekostnadene utgjør rundt 10 prosent av organisasjonens årsbudsjett.

Stor kontrast
FNs barnefond (UNICEF) har til sammenligning rundt 13.000 ansatte og et årlig reisebudsjett på i underkant av 1,2 milliarder kroner.

Kontrasten er enda større til Leger Uten Grenser (MSF), som har hele 37.000 helsearbeidere i sving verden over. De har et årlig reisebudsjett på rundt 360 millioner kroner og et klart forbud mot å fly businessklasse.

Bryter reglene
De ansatte i WHO har også regler, men bryter dem til stadighet, blant annet ved å fly på businessklasse og bo på dyre femstjerners hoteller.

Under et besøk i Guinea nylig, bodde WHO-sjef Margaret Chan i presidentsuiten på hotell Palm Camayenne, som koster nærmere 8.500 kroner natta.

Chan hadde inntil februar i fjor også anledning til å fly på første klasse, noe hun ifølge tre kilder i WHO ofte gjorde. Kildene ønsker å være anonyme av frykt for å miste jobben.

WHO hevder at Chan fløy businessklasse og at hun selv ba om at dette skulle nedfelles som regel. (…)

(Anm: Margaret McCartney: Valgfri offentliggjøring av utbetalinger er meningsløst. (Margaret McCartney: Optional disclosure of payments is pointless.) (- Og åpenhet anskueliggjør problemene: bør de som mottar tusenvis av pund fra industrien som "påtenkte ledere" sitte i paneler for utarbeidelse av nasjonale retningslinjer eller hjelpe til med å stake ut regjeringens politikk?) BMJ 2016;354:i3692 (Published 01 July 2016).)

(Anm: For mange retningslinjer for behandlinger er skrevet av eksperter med finansielle konflikter, viser studien. ( 22.8.2016).)

(Anm: Naturlig at dette er offentlig. OUS-lege Elisabeth Gulowsen Celius samtykket til offentliggjøring av honorarer. Hun er kritisk til kolleger som ikke har gjort det samme. – Det kan reise spørsmål om det er bindinger som ikke tåler dagens lys. ( 12.8.2016).)

(Anm: Resultater publisert i JAMA Internal Medicine antyder at ett enkelt gratis måltid kan øke sannsynligheten for at en lege vil foreskrive et bestemt legemiddel. (Findings published by JAMA Internal Medicine suggest that even a single free meal can boost the likelihood a doctor will prescribe a certain drug) ( 20.6.2016).)

(Anm: FDAs rådgivere på opioider sparket grunnet bånd til industrien, ifølge AP. (FDA's advisers on opioids booted for ties to industry, AP learns. Having been buffeted by controversy over its approval of addictive opioid drugs, the FDA is calling on a panel of experts to help it sort through the thorny issue. But even before the new panel met, it has been tinged by controversy itself, dismissing four advisers because of perceived ties to drugmakers.) ( 8.7.2016).)

(Anm: Offentliggjøring av verdioverføringer. Legemiddelindustrien offentliggjør i dag alle verdioverføringer til helsepersonell og helseforetak. ( 30.6.2016).)

(Anm: Leder. Disclosure UK: åpenhet (offentliggjøring) bør ikke lenger være valgfritt BMJ. (Editorials. Disclosure UK: transparency should no longer be an optional extra) BMJ 2016;354:i3730 (Published 06 July 2016).)

(Anm: Disclosure UKs nettsted gir en "illusjon av åpenhet", sier Goldacre (Disclosure UKs nettsted gir en "illusjon av åpenhet", sier Goldacre) (Disclosure UK website gives “illusion of transparency,” says Goldacre) BMJ 2016;354:i3760BMJ 2016; 354 (Published 06 July 2016).)

(Anm: Reporting of financial and non-financial conflicts of interest by authors of systematic reviews: a methodological survey. (…) Conclusions Although close to half of the published systematic reviews report that authors (typically many) have conflicts of interest, more than half report that they do not. Authors reported individual conflicts of interest more frequently than institutional and non-financial conflicts of interest. BMJ Open 2016;6:e011997.)

(Anm: - Legene som deklarerte de høyeste inntektene fra legemiddelfirmaer i Storbritannias nye database uttaler at åpenhet om utbetalingene bør være obligatorisk. (The doctors who declared the most earnings from drug companies in the United Kingdom’s new database have said that being transparent about payments should be mandatory.) BMJ 2016;354:i3716 (Published 04 July 2016).)

(Anm: Leger som mottar de største utbetalingene fra legemiddelfirmaer deklarerer dem ikke på nytt nettsted. (Doctors getting biggest payments from drug companies don’t declare them on new website. BMJ 2016;354:i3679 (Published 01 July 2016).)

(Anm: Association between payments from manufacturers of pharmaceuticals to physicians and regional prescribing: cross sectional ecological study. BMJ 2016;354:i4189 (Published 18 August 2016).)

(Anm: Medisinsk utstyr (

(Anm: Legemiddelprodusenter og medisinske utstyrsprodusenter betalte i fjor 6,5 milliarder dollar til leger og undervisningssykehus. (Drug and device makers paid $6.5 billion to docs and teaching hospitals last year.) ( 30.6.2016).)


(Anm: Forskning bliver farlig, når de negative resultater glemmes. (…) Nyt dansk studie viser problemet. (...) For få negative resultater leder til falske konklusioner. (…) Manglende negative resultater har kostet liv. (…) Vores model viser, at vi er nødt til at få publiceret mindst 20 procent af de negative resultater, der produceres inden for hvert forskningsfelt, hvis vi skal undgå at lave falske antagelser om videnskabelig fakta. ( 5.1.2017).)

(Anm: Legemiddelindustriens fortjeneste var nesten det dobbelte av utgifter til forskning og utvikling (FoU-utgifter) i 2013, 2014 og 2015. (Pharmaceutical Industry Profits Are Nearly Double R&D Costs in 2013, 2014 and 2015) (…) En primær unnskyldning som legemiddelindustrien bruker for «prisøkning» er de høye kostnadene for forskning og utvikling (FoU) som disse firmaene betaler for å få nye legemidler på markedet. ( 27.3.2017).)

- Dette skjoldet av patenter beskytter verdens bestselgende legemiddel.

(Anm: Dette skjoldet av patenter beskytter verdens bestselgende legemiddel. (- Produktet med 16 milliarder dollar i årsomsetning. (...) - Det har dessuten vært tilgjengelig i nærmere 15 år. (…) Den virkelige utfordringen var den tilsynelatende ugjennomtrengelige festningen av patenter som AbbVie metodisk har bygget rundt sin verdsatte pengemaskin. (…) Humira, som står for mer enn 60 prosent av AbbVies inntekter har en listepris på mer enn 50 000 dollar per pasient. ( 7.9.2017).)

(Anm: Myten om mediers åpenhet. Hvorfor er virkelig fordomsfri og frisinnet debatt uvanlig? Hvorfor så få nye, uavhengige meningsytrere? Hvorfor møter mediene dem dels med motstand, dels med taushet? ( 7.9.2006).)

(Anm: Er det en reproduserbarhetskrise i vitenskapelig forskning? (Is there a reproducibility crisis in science?) (…) Nyere studier, som undersøkte en rekke publiserte legemiddelstudier, klarte å gjenskape resultatene for mindre enn 25 % av dem - og tilsvarende resultater er blitt funnet i andre vitenskapelige disipliner. Hvordan bekjemper vi denne krisen for vitenskapelig ikke-reproduserbarhet? (

(Anm: Spinn i randomiserte kontrollerte studier (RCT) på angstlegemidler (antidepressiva) med et positivt opprinnelig resultat: en sammenligning av bekymringer uttrykt av den amerikanske legemiddelkontrollen FDA og den publiserte litteratur. (Spin in RCTs of anxiety medication with a positive primary outcome: a comparison of concerns expressed by the US FDA and in the published literature.) BMJ Open. 2017 Mar 29;7(3):e012886.)

(Anm: LEGEMIDDELPENGER – FDA er avhengig av industrifinansiering; penger kommer «festet med strikk» (DRUG MONEY. FDA Depends on Industry Funding; Money Comes with “Strings Attached”) ( 1.12.2016).)

(Anm: LEGEMIDDELPENGER - I FDA-møter er "pasientstemmene" ofte finansiert av legemiddelfirmaer (DRUG MONEY - In FDA Meetings, "Voice" of the Patient Often Funded by Drug Companies) ( 3.12.2016).)

(Anm: Recommendations to improve adverse event reporting in clinical trial publications: a joint pharmaceutical industry/journal editor perspective. BMJ 2016;355:i5078 (Published 03 October 2016).)

(Anm: - Hadde medisinerne på et tidligere tidspunkt hatt et evolusjonært perspektiv på sin medisinering, ville vi ikke vært i den kritiske situasjon vi er kommet i med hensyn til resistens. ( 22.8.2016).)

(Anm: Antibiotika kan gi flere kroniske sykdommer. (…) Folkehelseinstituttet: – Faren er underkommunisert. – Advarslene er høyst betimelige, sier lege og seniorforsker Merete Eggesbø ved Folkehelseinstituttet. (…) Ifølge Blaser viser ny forskning at det er en sammenheng mellom endringen av den naturlige tarmfloraen vår og utvikling av nye sykdommer som fedme, diabetes, astma,(...) Advarslene er høyst betimelige, sier lege og seniorforsker Merete Eggesbø ved Folkehelseinstituttet. (…) Ifølge Blaser viser ny forskning at det er en sammenheng mellom endringen av den naturlige tarmfloraen vår og utvikling av nye sykdommer som fedme, diabetes, astma, allergi, autisme og mageinfeksjoner. ( 30.10.2016).)

(Anm: Mange kliniske studier på barn forblir upubliserte eller uferdige. (Many pediatric clinical trials go unpublished or unfinished.) (- Selv om ulike statlige lover ble utformet for å fremme kliniske studier for å teste produkter på barn blir en bemerkelsesverdig stor mengde forskning enten ikke publisert eller ikke fullført, ifølge en ny studie.) ( 4.8.2016).)

(Anm: Fiona Godlee, editor in chief. Editor's Choice (Redaktørens valg). Hvorfor legemiddelgodkjenninger trenger bedre bevis (Why drug approval needs better evidence). (…) Begge artiklene konkluderer at legemiddelkontrollen har et straksbehov for å kreve høyere standarder på bevis før og etter godkjenning. Økte kostnader for evaluering vil mer enn oppveies av lavere kostnader for ineffektive behandlinger, med bedre resultater og færre pasientskader. I mellomtiden trenger pasienter og deres leger å ha en ærlig og åpen kommunikasjon om den virkelige styrken på bevisene bak beslutninger om godkjenninger.) BMJ 2016;353:i3483 (Published 23 June 2016).)

(Anm: Folk dør av hemmelige bivirkninger. Over 90 prosent av alle bivirkninger fra legemidler rapporteres ikke - selv ikke dødelige og livstruende bivirkninger. (...) Slik kan du hjelpe andre: ( 9.3.2015).)

(Anm: Medisinske feil — den tredje største dødsårsaken i USA. Medisinske feil inkluderes ikke i dødsattester eller i rangeringen av dødsårsaker. (...) Medisinske feil "fører til mer enn 250 000 dødsfall i USA årlig". (Medical error—the third leading cause of death in the US. Medical error is not included on death certificates or in rankings of cause of death. (...) Medical error 'causes more than 250,000 deaths in the U.S. annually.) BMJ 2016;353:i2139 (Published 03 May 2016).)

(Anm: Forskere: Medisinske feil nå tredje største dødsårsak i USA (Researchers: Medical errors now third leading cause of death in United States) ( 3.7.2016).)

(Anm: Legemiddelfirmaer har inngått forlik om påstander om villeding av leger om overlevelsesdata for kreft. (Drug companies settle claim of misleading doctors on cancer survival data) (- Medisinsk svindel sto for mer enn halvparten av 3,5 milliarder dollar som ble utbetalt i erstatninger i fjor. Vanligvis involverte dette beskyldninger om bestikkelser betalt for å generere falske pasienter eller unødvendige behandlinger og resepter som er belastet Medicare.) BMJ 2016;353:i3361 (Published 15 June 2016).)

(Anm: Den britiske regjeringen har drevet lobbyvirksomhet overfor EU-kommisjonen for å få vedtatt en mer avslappet tilnærming til reguleringer av legemidler, medisinsk utstyr og mat, ifølge et brev som BMJ har fått tilgang til. (The UK government has been lobbying the European Commission to adopt a more relaxed approach to regulating drugs, devices, and food, a letter seen by The BMJ has shown.) BMJ 2016;353:i3357 (Published 15 June 2016).)

(Anm: Gruppe (Transparency International) ber om flere tiltak for å takle korrupsjonen innen legemiddelindustrien. (Group calls for more to be done to tackle corruption in the pharmaceutical industry) (…) På begynnelsen av 2016 har én av 10 korrupsjonsundersøkelser i USA involvert legemiddelfirmaer, hvilket ifølge rapporten er et langt høyere antall saker enn det som involverer banksektoren. BMJ 2016;353:i3099 (Published 02 June 2016).)

(Anm: Finanschef beskyldt for insiderhandel med pharma-tips. (- Sanjay Valvani er anklaget for at have handlet på tips fra en tidligere ansat i den amerikanske FDA-myndighed, som bl.a. godkender lægemidler, samt for at sende informationerne videre til kollegaen Christopher Plaford. ( 16.6.2016).)

(Anm: TEST UTVIKLET FOR Å OPPDAGE FARLIGE BIVIRKNINGER SLIK AT FÆRRE PASIENTER GIS UTRYGGE LEGEMIDLER (Test aims to detect dangerous side effects so that fewer patients are given unsafe drugs) ( 19.12.2014).)

(Anm: RE: Studier som stikkes under stol Minileder Tidsskr Nor Legeforen 2015; 135:617 (25.5.2015).)

(Anm: RE: Psykisk syke lever kortere. Tidsskr Nor Legeforen Tidsskr Nor Legeforen 2015; 135:246 – 8 (8.09.2015).)

(Anm: RE: Psykisk syke lever kortere. Tidsskr Nor Legeforen 2015; 135:1534 – 5 (22.9.2015).)

(Anm: RE: Psykisk syke lever kortere. Tidsskr Nor Legeforen Tidsskr Nor Legeforen 2015; 135:1923-4 (17.11.2015).)

(Anm: Uriktig fremstilling av skader i studier på antidepressiva. Nye bevis fra kliniske studierapporter avdekker feilklassifisering, feiltolkning, og underrapportering av alvorlige skader. BMJ 2016;352:i217 (Published 28 January 2016).)

(Anm: Offentligt betalte forskere pynter på resultater af forsøg på mennesker. ( 14.3.2016).)

(Anm: Helsevesenet bruker ikke ny forskning. Norske pasienter får medisiner og behandling de ikke har bruk for fordi nye forskningsresultater ikke tas i bruk. Større problem enn unyttig forskning, mener eksperter. ( 2.1.2016).)

(Anm: Forvaltningsmakt og kunnskapspolitikk. Sammendrag. Helse- og omsorgsdepartementet benekter at de ønsker å styre forskninga i underliggende etater, og ser ingen problemer med at forskninga ligger under forvaltninga. Rus & Samfunn 05 / 2016 (Volum 9) Side: 33-35.)

(Anm: Frie forskere eller maktens lakeier? Abstrakt. Det går et skisma gjennom den samfunnsvitenskapelige rusforskningen. Ved første øyekast er det vanskelig å forstå hvorfor. Rus & Samfunn 05 / 2016 (Volum 9) Side: 36-40.)

(Anm: Lederartikler (Editorials) Tid for kunnskapsbasert forskningspolitikk Og offentlig finansierte forskere må være åpne om den sannsynlige betydningen av forskningen. (Time for evidence based research policy. And publicly funded researchers need to be candid about the likely impact of research). BMJ 2016;353:i3146 (Published 13 June 2016).)

(Anm: Kronikk: Kari Sollien, leder i allmennlegeforeningen. Hvorfor bruker ikke kommunene legenes kunnskap? Kunnskap skal redde velferdsstaten. I kommunene har ledelsen en lang vei å gå for å involvere helsepersonell i arbeidet med å utvikle helsetjenesten. ( 15.8.2016).)


(Anm: Framework of engagement with non-State actors ( (WHA68.9 Agenda item 11.2 26 May 2015).)


(Anm: Application from Health Technology Assessment international for admission into official relations with WHO ( ) (EB136/NGO/11 136th session 21 November 2014).)

(Anm: Application from the Global Diagnostic Imaging, Healthcare IT and Radiation Therapy Trade Association for admission into official relations with WHO ( (EB136/NGO/12 136th session 21 November 2014).)

(Anm: Application from Health Technology Assessment international for admission into official relations with WHO. ( (EB136/NGO/11 136th session 21 November 2014).)

(Anm: Application from the Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics for admission into official relations with WHO ( (EB136/NGO/5 136th session 21 November 2014).)

- Sterk lobby bak pandemi-beslutning

WHO swine flu review committee promises to probe links with drug industry (WHOs evalueringskomite for svineinfluensa lover å granske linker til legemiddelindustrien)
BMJ 2010;341:c36 (7 July)
The chairman of the external expert review committee examining the World Health Organization’s management of the H1N1 pandemic said on 2 July that the panel will probe deeper into allegations that the drug industry may have unduly influenced key outcomes.

Speaking at the end of the second round of hearings at WHO headquarters Harvey Fineberg, the head of the 27 member review committee, told reporters that, "Part of [our] concern is dealing with the accusations of undue influence by pharmaceutical companies on the decisions." (...)

Council of Europe condemns "unjustified scare" over swine flu (Europarådet fordømmer "uberettiget skremselspropaganda" over svineinfluensa)
BMJ 2010;340:c3033 (7.6.2010)
The Council of Europe has heavily criticised the World Health Organization, national governments, and EU agencies for their handling of the swine flu pandemic.
The parliamentary assembly of the council—the international organisation that protects human rights and the rule of law in Europe—published a draft of a report that reviewed how the H1N1 pandemic was handled.

National governments, WHO, and EU agencies had all been guilty of actions that led to a "waste of large sums of public money, and unjustified scares and fears about the health risks faced by the European public," says the report.

The conclusion came in the parliamentary assembly’s social, health and family affairs committee report published on 4 June. (...)

The report, The handling of the H1N1 pandemic: more transparency needed, is at: (...)

WHO-kritikk etter svineinfluensaen 4.6.2010
Verdens helseorganisasjons håndtering av svineinfluensaen var sterkt skjemmet av hemmelighold og interessekonflikter med store medisinprodusenter.

Det skriver det medisinske tidsskriftet British Medical Journal (BMJ).

Rapporten er skrevet i samarbeid mellom BMJ og Bureau of Investigative Journalism i London.

- Har brutt egne retningslinjer
Verdens helseorganisasjon (WHO) skal ha brutt sine egne retningslinjer ved å knytte til seg eksperter som samtidig fikk konsulenthonorarer fra de to største produsentene av influensamedisin, Roche og GlaxoSmithKline (GSK). (...)

WHO admits shortcomings in handling flu pandemic (WHO innrømmer feil i håndteringen av influensapandemien) 12.4.2010
(Reuters) - The World Health Organization on Monday conceded shortcomings in its handling of the H1N1 swine flu pandemic, including a failure to communicate uncertainties about the new virus as it swept around the globe.

Keiji Fukuda, the WHO's top influenza expert, said the U.N. agency's six-phase system for declaring a pandemic had sown confusion about the flu bug which was ultimately not as deadly as the widely-feared avian influenza. (...)

WHO is accused of "crying wolf" over swine flu pandemic (WHO er anklaget for “å slå falsk alarm” over svineinfluensapandemi)
BMJ 2010;340:c1904 (6 April)
Three separate international inquiries will soon be investigating the World Health Organization’s decision to declare the H1N1 virus a pandemic. The most advanced, being conducted by the Council of Europe, began in January.

Also, support is growing inside the European parliament for members to conduct their own investigation, and WHO itself will set up an independent review committee later this month. (...)

Sterk lobby bak pandemi-beslutning 17.11.2009
11. juni i år i Genève erklærte WHOs generaldirektør, Margaret Chan, svineinfluensaen for en pandemi. Det betød enorme økonomiske gevinster for legemiddelindustrien. Det som ikke kom fram var at flere av rådgiverne WHO har brukt sto på lønningslistene til legemiddelselskapene. (...)

Milliardindustri. Gjennom rådgivere WHO har brukt (se faktaboks) var industrien med på å påvirke beslutningen om at svineinfluensaen er en pandemi – og at vaksine er nødvendig. Det melder danske Dagbladet Information.

Investeringsbanken JP Morgan har beregnet at legemiddelindustrien i år vil motta vaksineordre for opp imot 62 milliarder kroner. En stor del av denne omsetningen skyldes WHO sin beslutning. (...)

Stærk lobbyisme bag WHO-beslutning om massevaccination 15.11.2009
Flere af WHO's influenzarådgivere er betalt af medicinalindustrien. Dermed var industrien med til at påvirke beslutningen om, at influenza A er en pandemi - og at vaccine er nødvendig. Siden har de samme virksomheder fået vaccineordrer for op mod 55 milliarder kroner (...)

Mange af de tilsyneladende uvildige forskere, som WHO benytter sig af, er imidlertid betalt af de firmaer, der producerer vaccinerne.

De mange dobbeltroller er problematiske, mener professor Tom Jefferson, der er epidemiolog ved Cochrane Center i Rom:

»Det er bekymrende, at mange af medlemmerne i WHO’s komitéer, underskriver sig selv med andre titler, selv om de rent faktisk repræsenterer medicinalindustrien,« siger han til Information.

En af eksperterne i WHO’s særlige H1N1-rådgivningsgruppe, Dr. Albert Ostenhaus, er netop blevet et punkt på den hollandske regerings dagsorden. Regeringen har indkaldte til et krisemøde, fordi det i en artikel i Science er kommet frem, at Albert Ostenhaus har økonomiske interesser i flere medicinalvirksomheder.

Samtidig er Dr. Albert Ostenhaus i Holland kendt som ‘Dr. Flu’ fordi han promoverer vaccine som løsningen på epidemier. (...)

WHO-rådgivere ble betalt av legemiddelindustrien 17.11.2009
Flere av rådgiverne som WHO har brukt i forbindelse med pandemien, sto på lønningslistene til legemiddelselskapene. (...)

Da generaldirektør Margaret Chan i Verdens Helseorganisasjon (WHO) erklærte svineinfluensaen for en pandemi i sommer, fikk legemiddelindustrien massive økonomiske gevinster.

Betalt av industrien
Nå kommer det frem at flere av rådgiverne WHO benyttet seg av, var betalt av legemiddelfirmaene. (...)

- WHO frykter ny hiv-epidemi: Ber alle homofile ta hiv-medisin

WHO frykter ny hiv-epidemi: Ber alle homofile ta hiv-medisin 11.7.2014
UTSATT GRUPPE: Ifølge WHO er hiv-smitte mest utbredt blant homofile menn. (...)

For første gang ber WHO nå alle homofile menn om å ta den såkalte ARV-medisinen, i et forsøk på å bekjempe en ny verdensomspennende hiv-epidemi.

Fredag kunngjorde Verdens helseorganisasjon (WHO) flere nye retningslinjer som skal bidra til å senke antallet personer i verden som får hiv-diagnosen. En av anbefalingene er ifølge AFP at alle homofile menn bør behandles med såkalte antiretrovirale medisiner (ARV), uavhengig av om de er hiv-smittet eller ikke.

Antall personer som får påført hiv-viruset i kroppen er ifølge statistikken fra WHO på vei opp, spesielt blant mannlige homofile.

– Vi har sett eksplosive epidemier, uttalte lederen for WHOs hiv-avdeling, Gottfried Hirnschall, på en pressekonferanse fredag.

Han nevner blant annet Thailand som et av landene hvor hivsmitte blant homofile menn er stigende. (...)

- WHO innrømmer "inkonsekvenser" i sin politikk på interessekonflikter

Conflicts of Interest and the Future of Financing for WHO 18.5.2011
Statement on WHO governance and the Management of Conflicts of Interest and the Future of Financing for WHO.

We write to express our concerns about governance of the World Health Organization (WHO) and other public health bodies, as regards the management of conflicts of interest.

WHO and other public health institutions have complex relations with commercial entities that supply health care products and services. In some cases the commercial entities are subject to or in need of regulation, in order to protect consumers and promote the public interest. Public health institutions are also often engaged in buying goods and services, or providing financial assistance for such purchases.

It is therefore widely recognized that governments and public health institutions like the WHO must avoid conflicts of interest in all aspects of governance. WHO can only respond meaningfully to the challenges of public health through greater transparency and accountability guided by the priorities of Member States and the advance of public interest. However, transparency is a necessary but not sufficient safe guard: there must also be a clear approach and policy to ensure that those representing commercial interests are not part of policy and norm setting decision making. (...)

WHO-eksperter mottok lege-penger 11.8.2010
Eksperter i Verdens helseorganisasjon mottok støtte fra legemiddelindustrien. (...)

5 av 15 eksperter som ga Verdens helseorganisasjon (WHO) råd om svineinfluensaen, har oppgitt at de har mottatt støtte fra legemiddelindustrien.

Ekspertkomiteen ble ledet av den australske professoren John Mackenzie, men navnene på de 14 medlemmene har vært hemmeligholdt fram til nå.

Årsaken var ifølge WHO å beskytte dem fra utidig press fra blant annet legemiddelindustrien mens svineinfluensaen herjet verden.

(Anm: List of Members of, and Advisor to, the International Health Regulations (2005) Emergency Committee concerning Influenza Pandemic (H1N1) 2009 ( 12.8.2010).)

Her er WHOs hemmelige svineinfluensaeksperter 11.8.2010
(VG Nett) Verdens helseorganisasjon (WHO) har for første gang gått ut med alle navnene i en tidligere hemmelig ekspertgruppe.

WHO har fått kritikk for pandemihåndteringen, og det har vært stilt spørsmål ved om avgjørelsen om å erklære en fullverdig pandemi var riktig.

Listen viser at seks av 16 har oppgitt mulige interessekonflikter. Denne går hovedsakelig ut på at de direkte eller indirekte har hatt finansiell tilknytning til forskjellige legemiddelselskaper.

Tre av dem har hatt tilknytning til GSK, som har laget den første svineinfluensavaksinen, Pandemrix. (...)

GSK for åpenhet
Alle ekspertene som har hatt tilknytning til GSK, har også hatt tilknytning til minst ett annet farmasøytisk selskap.

Administrerende direktør for GSK Norge, Åge Nærdal, sier til VG Nett at han også skulle ha ønsket større åpenhet rundt ekspertene WHO har benyttet. (...)

Her er WHOs hemmelige svineinfluensaeksperter 11.8.2010
(VG Nett) Verdens helseorganisasjon (WHO) har for første gang gått ut med alle navnene i en tidligere hemmelig ekspertgruppe.

WHO har fått kritikk for pandemihåndteringen, og det har vært stilt spørsmål ved om avgjørelsen om å erklære en fullverdig pandemi var riktig.

Listen viser at seks av 16 har oppgitt mulige interessekonflikter. Denne går hovedsakelig ut på at de direkte eller indirekte har hatt finansiell tilknytning til forskjellige legemiddelselskaper.

Tre av dem har hatt tilknytning til GSK, som har laget den første svineinfluensavaksinen, Pandemrix. (...)

GSK for åpenhet
Alle ekspertene som har hatt tilknytning til GSK, har også hatt tilknytning til minst ett annet farmasøytisk selskap.

Administrerende direktør for GSK Norge, Åge Nærdal, sier til VG Nett at han også skulle ha ønsket større åpenhet rundt ekspertene WHO har benyttet. (...)

Professor: Unødvendig pandemi-alarm 25.7.2010
Svineinfluensapandemien er ennå ikke over, ifølge WHO-direktør Margaret Chan. Fortsatt er det hemmelig hvem som gir henne råd. Norske eksperter mener det er en gåte hvorfor hun slo full pandemialarm i fjor. (...)

WHO Director-General replies to the BMJ
Margaret Chan, director-general1
BMJ 2010;340:c3463 (29 June)
In her editorial accompanying the feature on conflicts of interest at the World Health Organization,1 2 Godlee notes that it is "almost certainly true" that the mildness of the H1N1 pandemic, compared with the severity long expected from a virus like H5N1, has contributed to the current critical scrutiny of WHO’s decisions. As the editorial further states, this reality does not make it wrong to ask hard questions.

We fully agree. Good investigative journalism brings problems, and their potential consequences, into sharp focus and identifies the need for remedial action. Potential conflicts of interest are inherent in any relationship between a normative and health development agency, such as WHO, and profit driven industry. WHO needs to establish, and enforce, stricter rules of engagement with industry, and we are doing so. However, let me be perfectly clear on one point. At no time, not for one second, did commercial interests enter my decision making. (...)

Kan vi lenger stole på folkehelsemyndighetene?
Jan Helge Solbakk er professor i medisinsk etikk, UiO og UiB. 18.6.2010
Det omfattende samrøret mellom helseorganisasjonen (WHO) og vaksineprodusentene er nå dokumentert. Vaksineskepsis kan ikke lenger avvises som konspirasjonteori, skriver Jan Helge Solbakk. (...)

3. juni 2010 publiserte det prestisjetunge tidsskriftet British Medical Journal (BMJ) en rapport om disse forholdene (Deborah Cohen, Philip Carter: «Conflicts of Interest: WHO and the pandemic flu 'conspiracies'», British Medical Journal). Rapporten er særdeles lite flatterende lesning for WHO.

Dagen etter presenterte også helsekomiteen i Europarådet sin rapport om WHOs håndtering av svineinfluensaen (Paul Flynn: «The handling of the H1N1 pandemic: more transparency needed»). Også den er knusende i sine konklusjoner.

På en pressekonferanse i Paris samme dag uttalte BMJs sjefredaktør, Fiona Godlee, at WHOs troverdighet nå er så skadet at det kan føre til at organisasjonens nåværende ledelse må ta sine hatter og gå. (...)

WHO admits to "inconsistencies" in its policy on conflicts of interest (WHO innrømmer "inkonsekvenser" i sin politikk på interessekonflikter)
BMJ 2010;340:c3167 (15 June)
The World Health Organization has admitted that its policies governing the publication of conflicts of interests of its expert advisers have "inconsistencies" and that safeguards "surrounding engagements with industry" need to be tightened.

The agency was responding to criticisms of its handling of the swine flu pandemic in an investigation by the BMJ and the Bureau of Investigative Journalism and a report from the Council of Europe published last week. (...)

In a letter to the BMJ Margaret Chan, WHO’s director general, defended the agency’s actions leading up to, during, and following its decision to declare the A/H1N1 flu pandemic in June 2009 ( She said, "At no time, not for one second, did commercial interests enter my decision-making." (...)

Øf øf, sådan tjener man 42 milliarder 10.6.2010
WHO’s omdømme har taget alvorligt skade af H1N1, skriver Poul Aarøe Pedersen.

I morgen er det præcis ét år siden, at Verdenssundhedsorganisationen, WHO, skred til handling og fuppede en hel verden ved at erklære influenza-epidemien H1N1 for en pandemi, dvs. en global epidemi, den første i 41 år.

Dermed var scenen sat for et skuespil, som i fantasi ikke overgår selv den vildeste konspirationsteori: Ikke alene har det vist sig, at influenzaepidemien ikke blev nær så omfattende og farlig, som WHO-eksperterne forudsagde.

Det har også vist sig, at selvsamme WHO-eksperter var købt og betalt – ja, eller i hvert fald på lønningslisten – hos de to førende vaccinefabrikanter, Roche og GlaxoSmithKline. (...)

WHO Director-General’s letter to BMJ editors (Brev fra generaldirektøren i WHO til BMJ-redaksjonen)
Statement 8.6.2010
Below you will find a copy of the letter Dr Margaret Chan, Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO) sent to the editors of the British Medical Journal (BMJ) in reference to their article on conflicts of interest at the WHO.

To the Editors,
In the editorial accompanying the feature on conflicts of interest at WHO, the author notes that it is “almost certainly true” that the mildness of the H1N1 pandemic, compared with the severity long expected from a virus like H5N1, has contributed to the current critical scrutiny of WHO’s decisions. As the editorial further states, this reality does not make it wrong to ask hard questions.

Related links -- Editorial: “Conflicts of interest and pandemic flu” BMJ 2010;340:c2947

We fully agree. Good investigative journalism brings problems, and their potential consequences, into sharp focus and identifies the need for remedial action. Potential conflicts of interest are inherent in any relationship between a normative and health development agency, like WHO, and profit-driven industry. WHO needs to establish, and enforce, stricter rules of engagement with industry, and we are doing so. However, let me be perfectly clear on one point. At no time, not for one second, did commercial interests enter my decision-making. (...)

Flu experts rebut conflict claims (Influensaeksperter avviser påstander om konflikter)
Nature 2010;465, 672-673 (8 june)
Reports throw unsubstantiated suspicion on scientific advice given to the World Health Organization.

"Drug firms 'encouraged world health body to exaggerate swine flu threat'," screamed Britain's Daily Mail newspaper on 4 June. "2 European reports criticize WHO's H1N1 pandemic guidelines as tainted," headlined The Washington Post the next day. To judge from media coverage last week, a major scandal had been exposed in the handling of the H1N1 flu pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO). But nothing could be further from the truth.

The news articles reported on two investigations: one by journalists at the BMJ and the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, a non-profit body in London launched in April; the other by the health committee of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) — a human-rights body based in Strasbourg, France, independent of the European Union. (...)

WHO-kritikk etter svineinfluensaen 4.6.2010
Verdens helseorganisasjons håndtering av svineinfluensaen var sterkt skjemmet av hemmelighold og interessekonflikter med store medisinprodusenter.

Det skriver det medisinske tidsskriftet British Medical Journal (BMJ).

Rapporten er skrevet i samarbeid mellom BMJ og Bureau of Investigative Journalism i London.

- Har brutt egne retningslinjer
Verdens helseorganisasjon (WHO) skal ha brutt sine egne retningslinjer ved å knytte til seg eksperter som samtidig fikk konsulenthonorarer fra de to største produsentene av influensamedisin, Roche og GlaxoSmithKline (GSK). (...)

Troverdigheten svekket
Redaktøren av British Medical Journal, Fiona Godlee, mener WHOs troverdighet er sterkt svekket.
Hun mener WHO kan reparere skaden ved å opplyse om komitémedlemmenes interessekonflikter, og lage strengere regler for samarbeid med den farmasøytiske industrien. På den måten mener hun WHO kan hindre at interessekonflikter skal påvirke avgjørelsene. (...)

Pharma and WHO in the dock over swine flu conflict of interest (Legemiddelindustrien og WHO på tiltalebenken over interessekonflikter angående svineinfluensa) 4.6.2010
Researchers advising the World Health Organisation over preparations for a swine flu pandemic had done paid work for pharmaceutical firms “who stood to gain from the guidance these scientists were preparing”, according to a report released this morning.

The analysis is the result of a joint investigation by the British Medical Journal and The Bureau of Investigative Journalism. It notes that the WHO’s advice led to governments stockpiling billions of dollars of antivirals as part of global pandemic preparedness plans but claims that “despite repeated requests”, the WHO has failed to provide any details about conflict of interests involving the experts consulted “and what, if anything, was done about them”.

The BMJ says its report “echoes a highly critical inquiry by the Council of Europe”, whose findings will also be published later today (full analysis on PharmaTimes World News on Monday), “and will fuel suspicions that the drug industry was able to exert undue influence” on the WHO.

The investigation notes that the WHO’s 2004 guidance on the use of antivirals in a pandemic was prepared by an influenza expert who had received payment from Roche, manufacturers of Tamiflu (oseltamivir) and GlaxoSmithKline, which markets Relenza (zanamivir), for lecturing and consultancy work. That guidance concluded that “countries should consider developing plans for ensuring the availability of antivirals” and that they “will need to stockpile in advance, given that current supplies are very limited". (...)

- GlaxoSmithKline Storbritannia svarer

WHO and the pandemic flu (WHO og influensapandemien)
GlaxoSmithKline UK responds (GlaxoSmithKline Storbritannia svarer)
BMJ 2010;340:c3464 (29 June)
Cohen and Carter explore whether the World Health Organization should have taken advice from experts who had declarable financial and research ties with pharmaceutical companies producing antivirals and influenza vaccines, including GlaxoSmithKline (GSK).1 Can experts provide advice on public health issues such as pandemic flu, as well as help to develop medicines and vaccines for these same health issues?

It is understandable that WHO and research based pharmaceutical companies would seek the same world experts for their respective purposes. Indeed, expertise could be compromised if those that have worked with industry are not able to advise on public health issues. Similarly, without outside advice the development of drugs to meet patients’ needs and address public health issues would not be possible.

To help manage the potential conflict of interest highlighted by Cohen and Carter, disclosure of financial relationships with industry is clearly important. We agree that transparency over the relationships between industry and healthcare professionals is a must.2 (...)

- De høye legemiddelkostnadene

The high cost of medicines (De høye legemiddelkostnader) 21.6.2006
In the Philippines, there is another cause of high medicine prices, namely, the peculiar practice of using “medical representatives” or drug salespersons to market pharmaceutical products to doctors and hospitals.

The World Health Organization recently released the report of the Commission on Intellectual Property Rights, Innovation and Public Health, a study that may have far-reaching consequences in terms of addressing the lack of access of the world’s poor to important life-saving drugs. The study is revolutionary not because it provides new crucial insights on a problem that has long been borne by the poor particularly in the developing countries, but because it is the first time that a root cause of the problem is being squarely and officially recognized and recommendations are being given to strike at it. (...)

- Projections of mortality and burden of disease to 2030

Projections of mortality and burden of disease to 2030 (2006)
Revised global and regional projections of mortality and burden of disease by cause for 2005, 2015 and 2030 are now available. The revisions are documented in a working paper, together with references to published papers on data sources and methods. Detailed results for projected deaths and DALYs can be downloaded as Excel spreadsheets.

Paper published in PLoS Medicine [pdf 775kb]
Download published paper by Mathers and Loncar. Projections of Global Mortality and Burden of Disease from 2002 to 2030. PLoS Med 3(11): e442. doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.0030442 (Outside WHO website) (...)

- Legers troverdighet

Legers troverdighet
Kaare R. Norum
Tidsskr Nor Lægeforen 2006; 126: 792
I Tidsskriftet nr. 24/2005 har Legeforeningens president en artikkel om legers troverdighet (1). I den anledning vil jeg spørre Karl Jensen ved Harstad sykehus om troverdigheten av hans utsagn i spalten Brev til redaktøren i samme nummer: «Det offisielle kostholdssynet, finansielt støttet av bl.a. Coca-Cola gjennom Verdens helseorganisasjon...» (2).

Jeg har arbeidet for Verdens helseorganisasjon i flere år, blant annet med helsespørsmål knyttet opp mot overforbruk av sukker, spesielt pga. søtede brusdrikker. Jeg vil be om at Karl Jensen enten legger frem troverdige kilder for sin påstand om at Verdens helseorganisasjon er finansielt støttet av Coca-Cola, eller trekker sin påstand offisielt tilbake. (...)

K. Jensen svarer:
Karl Jensen Tidsskr Nor Lægeforen 2006; 126: 792

For den som er interessert i å se dokumentasjon om Coca-Colas press og innblanding i arbeidet til Verdens helseorganisasjon (WHO) anbefales boken Sukker - en snikende fare av Poleszynski & Mysterud (1), der temaet er omtalt i et helt og godt dokumentert kapittel.

Det er ikke bare WHO og Gro Harlem Brundtland som har vært utsatt for press. Coca-Cola figurerer høyt på listen over sponsorer av forskning innenfor ernæringsfag i USA. Gro Harlem Brundtland har i norske aviser offentliggjort detaljer om denne innblandingen i forbindelse med publisering av WHOs mer restriktive retningslinjer om sukkerforbruk i den tiden hun var generalsekretær i organisasjonen. (...)

- WHOs manglende troverdighet

Letter to WHO Director General about conflict of interest disclosure (June 2007)
(...) In mid-March 2007, the European Pharmaceutical Forum’s working group on information to patients released two documents for public consultation: a list of ‘quality criteria’ for patient information, and a sample patient information sheet on diabetes.

We are concerned that the questions that accompany this consultation frame it in such a way as to prevent any real democratic debate and to predetermine the type of responses that are likely to be received. This creates yet another sham consultation process, designed to justify a long-term plan for
legislative change aiming to remove the ban on direct-to-consumer advertising of prescription drugs.

The Medicines in Europe Forum cannot in all conscience take part in this consultation. Nevertheless, as key stakeholders with responsibilities for medicines information policies, we would like to contribute towards an honest, balanced debate by means of this open letter. Health Action International* (HAI) Europe and the International Society of Drug Bulletins** (ISDB) support the content of this letter and shares the concerns expressed by the Medicines in Europe Forum. (...)

Medical journal hits U.N. agencies on health data 21.9.2007
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A top medical journal on Thursday accused U.N. agencies of playing "fast and loose" with scientific data, and faulted UNICEF for what it called the hasty release of global child mortality figures.

The Lancet medical journal criticized the way the United Nations Children's Fund announced last week that worldwide deaths of children under 5 had fallen below 10 million in 2006, which UNICEF hailed as a public health milestone.

The Lancet also faulted the way the World Health Organization used research data on a key method of preventing malaria -- using bed nets treated with insecticides to ward off the mosquitoes that spread the disease. (...)

- WHO kritisert for å for unnvike bevisbasert medisin

WHO blasted for eschewing evidence-based medicine (WHO kritisert for å for unnvike bevisbasert medisin)
National Review of Medicine 2007;4(10) (MAY 30)
The World Health Organization (WHO) was officially created by the United Nations on April 7, 1948. Its mandate was a lofty one: "the attainment by all peoples of the highest possible level of health." Its annual operating budget for this rather large task was set at just $5 million USD.

But the WHO has achieved a great deal with remarkably little in its nearly sixty-year history — most notably the elimination of the scourge of smallpox. It's also on track to eliminate poliomyelitis, despite recent setbacks. Leprosy is in steep decline, and onchocerciasis (river blindness) has been largely driven from its traditional range.

The WHO has had less luck with malaria and TB, partly because the reckless overuse by others of quinine and antibiotics has thrown up unanticipated problems with resistance. Of course, the WHO has been no more than a trivial breakwater against the tidal wave of HIV/AIDS. But they can hardly be blamed for that.

Or can they? Are they making the best use of their paltry resources? Apparently not, according to a recent paper in The Lancet, which accuses the WHO of using outdated methods in drawing up its clinical recommendations, relying too heavily on expert opinion rather than systematic reviews of evidence.

Dr Andrew Oxman and Dr Atle Fretheim of the Norwegian Knowledge Centre for Health Services and Dr John Lavis of McMaster University interviewed 29 WHO staffers, including 15 department directors, involved in the drawing up of four sets of recommendations. The guidelines covered antiretroviral therapy for HIV, treatment of tuberculosis, treatment of malaria and the integrated management of childhood illness. (...)

(Anm: Campaign is launched to make patients the focus of evidence based medicine. BMJ 2014;349:g4443 (03 July 2014).)

(Anm: Langtidsbruk av kinin mot muskelkramper kan øke dødsrisikoen. Long term quinine for muscle cramps may increase death risk. Long term use of quinine, prescribed off label for muscle cramps or restless leg syndrome, is associated with increased mortality, says a study of UK GP prescribing published in JAMA.1 The British National Formulary (BNF) says that quinine salts such as quinine sulfate 200-300 mg at bedtime are effective in reducing nocturnal leg cramps by about 25%.2 Because of potential toxicity, however, quinine is not recommended for routine treatment and is advised only when cramps are very painful or frequent, when other treatable causes of cramp have been considered, and where non-drug treatments such as stretching exercises have not worked. It says that patients should be monitored closely and that treatment should be interrupted at three month intervals to assess the need for further quinine treatment. BMJ 2017;357:j2236 (Published 11 May 2017).)

Hård kritik mot WHO:s arbetsmetoder
Läkemedelsvärlden 2007(5) (Maj)
Åsikter och expertpaneler genomsyrar WHO:s arbete och systematiska litteraturgenomgångar lyser med sin frånvaro. I en rapport som presenteras i The Lancet online imorgon onsdag kritiseras Världshälsoorganisationen för bristande underlag i sina rekommendationer. (...)

I en kommenter publicerad samtidigt i The Lancet förklarar WHO att de tar till sig kritiken och ser allvarligt på de brister som rapporten visar. ”WHO har tidigare föregått med gott exempel och kommer sträva efter att göra det även i framtiden. Att basera våra rekommendationer på öppna och transparenta övervägande av de bästa forskningsresultaten är avgörande för WHO:s internationella trovärdighet, position och rykte”, avslutar de sin kommentar. (...)

World Health Organization slammed by medical journal 7.5.2007
The Lancet finds WHO neglects evidence in making health guidelines

The medical journal’s criticism of WHO could shock many in the global health community, as one of WHO’s main jobs is to produce guidelines on everything from fighting the spread of bird flu and malaria control to enacting anti-tobacco legislation.

“This is a pretty seismic event,” Lancet editor Dr. Richard Horton, who was not involved in the research for the article. “It undermines the very purpose of WHO.”

The study was conducted by Dr. Andrew Oxman and Dr. Atle Fretheim, of the Norweigian Knowledge Centre for Health Services, and Dr. John Lavis at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ont.

They interviewed senior WHO officials and analyzed various guidelines to determine how they were produced. What they found was a distinctly non-transparent process. (...)

WHO: the casualties and compromises of renewal
The Lancet 2002; 359:1605-1611
(...) Brundtland told me that her most important achievements were to have “strengthened the credibility of WHO” and to have “raised the awareness of health on to the political and global development agendas”. But there is a troubling schism between the aspirations of its leadership and the realities faced by the organisation on the ground. Rapid change during the past 4 years has reinvigorated WHO's mandate, but poor management has created new tensions that the organisation's leadership seems unwilling to address. (...)

Obesity task force linked to WHO takes "millions" from drug firms
BMJ 2006;332:1412 (17 June)
The International Obesity Task Force has relied heavily on funding from the drug industry for a decade, despite being widely seen as an independent think tank and having ties to the World Health Organization.

Set up in the mid-1990s with help from grants from three drug companies, the task force aims to portray obesity as a "serious medical condition" and to promote better prevention and management strategies.

It has a high media profile and is highly influential. A senior US member and a well respected authority on obesity, William Dietz, is currently one of the driving forces behind a controversial change in definitions of childhood overweight and obesity, which some researchers believe may exaggerate the problem and unnecessarily label children as diseased. (See accompanying story p 1412.)
Although the task force has at times disclosed the names of drug company sponsors, the exact amount of that sponsorship remains secret.

In 2002 the International Obesity Task Force officially merged with another group called the International Association for the Study of Obesity. The most recent annual report of the newly merged group highlights close ties with WHO but also shows that two drug companies, Roche and Abbott, are primary sponsors, supplying around two thirds of its total funding. Roche makes the antiobesity drug orlistat (Xenical), and Abbott makes sibutramine hydrocholoride (Reductil). The report also shows that the task force's available cash amounts to more than £1m.

Examples of activities listed in the report that were funded by drug companies include an "educational" programme for European specialists and participation in a meeting in Monte Carlo sponsored by Roche. The company declined to say how much money it had provided to the task force but said it adhered to guidelines and did not get involved in its work.

A senior member of the merged group who has seen funding documents but did not want to be identified told the BMJ that over recent years sponsorship from drug companies is likely to have amounted to "millions."

Responding to questions from the BMJ about its funding, the task force pointed to its 1998 annual report, which lists "unrestricted educational grants" from Roche, BASF Knoll, and Servier. (...)

- The World Health Organisation has a tendency to talk about the widespread and undiagnosed levels of depression internationally, but it also has close links with the pharmaceutical industry

Britain on the couch: We are in the grip of an epidemic. But are drugs the only answer? 8.10.2006
Dr Rufus May argues that, rather than trying to cure our sadness with pills, we must accept it as part of life. Only then can we start to change it

(...) I believe it's a myth that there is a worldwide epidemic of clinical depression that needs identifying and treating. The pharmaceutical companies have systematically promoted this myth. In the 10 years up to 2002 the use of antidepressants increased by 234 per cent. Yet still we are told we are more depressed than ever before. The World Health Organisation has a tendency to talk about the widespread and undiagnosed levels of depression internationally, but it also has close links with the pharmaceutical industry.

Yes, it's true that there's a lot of unhappiness in our society, but convincing people it is a medical condition does not help. I meet people who've bought into the idea that their sadness is caused by a chemical imbalance. Many of them have resigned themselves to one cocktail of medication after another. They have given up on their own ability to find a solution. After all, what can they do about their faulty brain-wiring? In fact, the chemical-imbalance theory is extremely dodgy. Joanna Moncrieff, from University College London, is a consultant psychiatrist who has taken a close look at the scientific evidence. She has argued that there is more evidence for psychiatric medication creating a chemical imbalance rather than correcting one. (...)

- WHO launches anti-corruption drive on medicines

WHO launches anti-corruption drive on medicines 1.11.2006
Counterfeit medicines boost resistant strains of disease and endanger lives, say researchers

[WINDHOEK] Up to a quarter of what governments spend on medicines each year is lost to fraud, bribery and diversion of pharmaceuticals, says the World Health Organization.

The organisation this week (30 October) launched an initiative to help governments fight corruption by promoting greater transparency in medicines, regulation and procurement.

"Countries need to deal with this problem and ensure that the precious resources devoted to health are being well spent," said Howard Zucker, assistant director-general for health technology and pharmaceuticals at the World Health Organization (WHO). (...)

- Samarbeider med tobakksgiganter

Samarbeider med tobakksgiganter - lederfavoritt i WHO 7.11.2006
Kreftforeningen ut mot WHO-favoritt
Favoritten til å bli ny generalsekretær i Verdens Helseorganisasjon (WHO) har sterke forbindelser til tobakksindustrien. (...)

Kreftforeningen i Norge reagerer sterkt på at Frenk, som i 2004 inngikk en avtale med tobakksindustrien om økonomisk støtte, skal fronte en organisasjon hvor en av de viktigste oppgavene er å redusere skadene av tobakksbruk.

Sammen med flere andre frivillige organisasjoner fra hele verden, oppfordrer Kreftforeningen styret i WHO til ikke å velge Julio Frenk som ny leder av organisasjonen. (...)

- WHO suppressed evidence on effects of depleted uranium, expert says

WHO suppressed evidence on effects of depleted uranium, expert says
BMJ 2006;333:990 (11 November)
A World Health Organization paper on the risks to health from munitions that use depleted uranium has been called into question by a member of the editorial team that produced the report. Keith Baverstock, who worked as a WHO radiation expert, claims that research indicating a carcinogenic effect was deliberately suppressed.

Dr Baverstock said that he tried to submit research from the Armed Forces Radiobiology Research Institute of the US Department of Defense that found evidence of genotoxicity from depleted uranium particles in the body.
But Mike Repacholi, the WHO scientist who oversaw the production of the 2001 report, Health Effects of Depleted Uranium, refused to include any mention of the research in the final report. (...)

- WHO chief urges fight against "neglected" diseases

WHO chief urges fight against "neglected" diseases 1.2.2007
BANGKOK (Reuters) - The head of the World Health Organization (WHO) called on Thursday for a stepped up fight against "neglected" diseases afflicting 1 billion people, mainly in poor countries. (...)

- Who's funding WHO? (Hvem finansierer WHO?)

World Health Organization refutes allegations
BMJ 2007;334:440 (3 March)
The World Health Organization categorically rejects the allegations made in a recent story in the BMJ which imply that WHO solicits money from the pharmaceutical sector through independent organisations by circumventing its own rules.1

As the BMJ correctly reports, WHO has clear guidelines against seeking or accepting funds from commercial enterprises or through third parties where there would be a conflict of interest.

When WHO does accept donations or funds from pharmaceutical companies—for example, donations of vaccines or medicines—those donations are clearly accounted for and transparently reported. (...)

Who's funding WHO? (Hvem finansierer WHO?)
Drug industry sponsorship
BMJ 2007;334:338-340 (17 February)
WHO guidelines state that it will not accept money from drug companies, but how rigorous is it in enforcing this? Michael Day investigates (...)

Controversies revisited
Editor's Choice
BMJ 2007;334 (17 February)
(...) Another controversy revisited in this week's issue is how healthcare organisations should conduct their relationships with the pharmaceutical industry (doi: 10.1136/bmj.39119.519664.BE). Michael Day seems to tell a simple story: the WHO can't take money from commercial organisations, but it can take it from patients' organisations. So when a WHO division seeks help in funding a report on neurological diseases it talks to a patient organisation, who in turn asks a drug company, which offers funds—which WHO then suggests would have to be seen to come from the patient organisation not the drug company. Except in this case the drug company didn't like the lack of transparency and withdrew the funds and the WHO official said he never meant to ask for the money. The picture is muddied because drug companies are sensitive about their relationships with patient organisations and WHO is cautious of the constraining influence of some relationships with industry. (...)

- The World Health Organisation, the drugs company and the $10,000 funding offer

The World Health Organisation, the drugs company and the $10,000 funding offer 16.2.2007
• Patients' group 'was asked to act as covert channel'
• UN body denies attempt to bend donation rules

The World Health Organisation is facing allegations that it attempted to secure a $10,000 (£5,100) donation from a drugs company by asking a patients' group to act as a covert channel for the funds, in the light of documents published today. The alleged arrangement would have broken the WHO's own rules on accepting money from the pharmaceutical industry.

Emails between Benedetto Saraceno, the WHO's director of mental health and substance abuse, and the European Parkinson's Disease Association appear to suggest that the WHO was willing to take $10,000 from Britain's biggest drug company, GlaxoSmithKline, to help pay for the preparation of a report on neurological disorders, for which GSK makes drugs.

However, Dr Saraceno made it clear that the money must pass through the coffers of the EPDA first because of the rules on WHO accepting drug industry funding.

"Unfortunately WHO cannot receive funds from the pharmaceutical industry," he wrote to Mary Baker of the EPDA in June 2006. (...)

- Pharmaceutical industry outnumbered those from independent groups by a margin of 2 to 1

Pharma Links of NGOs in the WHO IGWG process 7.11.2007
Essential Action today released a report detailing the brand-name pharmaceutical industry ties of NGOs submitting comments to the second public hearing of the World Health Organization's Intergovernmental Working Group on Public Health, Innovation and Intellectual Property.

The full report is available here: igwg.contributorlinks.rtf

A pdf version of the report is available here: igwg.contributorlinks.pdf

The report finds that, even excluding pharmaceutical trade associations that described themselves as NGOs, NGO submissions from groups with links to the pharmaceutical industry outnumbered those from independent groups by a margin of 2 to 1.

Understanding an organization's ties to affected industries is helpful in assessing the merits of comments submitted. Essential Action urges the WHO in the future to request that all authors disclose their financial ties to corporations, including funding sources and whether the author is a consultant, lobbyist or other representative of private industry. (...)

- En ny sykdom hvert år

- En ny sykdom hvert år 23.8.2007
Omtrent hvert år oppstår det en ny sykdom i verden, og det er for første gang i historien, rapporterer Verdens Helseorganisasjon, WHO.

Siden 1970 har det utviklet seg hele 39 nye sykdommer, og bare i løpet av de fem siste årene har WHO identifisert over 1100 epidemier, blant dem kolera, polio og fugleinfluensa.

- Det vil derfor være ekstremt naivt å tro at det ikke kommer nye sykdommer som aids, ebola og sars, heter det i "En sikrere fremtid", WHOs årlige rapport om verdens helsetilstand. (...)

LES RAPPORTEN HER (engelsk) (...)

- Bulletin of the World Health Organization (BLT)

Accessing and understanding the evidence
Bulletin of the World Health Organization (BLT) 2006;84(12):921-1000 (December)
WHO regularly gathers, evaluates, and cites evidence to support its recommendations. How this is done varies between departments, but highly centralized processes, complex methods and expert consultations are often used. WHO guidelines are distributed to health workers and policy-makers in developing countries, but few of these people have the opportunity to be involved in the process of choosing and weighing the evidence to formulate the guidelines that are ostensibly designed for their use. Such incomplete engagement may impede ownership of WHO recommendations, and thus be an obstacle to full implementation. (...)

Giving patients better access to trial information
Bulletin of the World Health Organization (BLT) 2006;84(6):425-504 (June 2006)
Patients and many other members of the public have much to gain from a global clinical trials registry initiative launched by WHO. On 19 May, WHO unveiled the rules under which pharmaceutical companies and others doing research must disclose 20 sets of data when they register clinical trials they are planning to do (see boxes on pp. 430–431). (...)

Corruption wastes up to $12.5B of drug spending a year, health organization says 31.10.2006
GENEVA (AP) — Up to $12.5 billion of what governments spend on medicines each year is lost to corruption, the World Health Organization said Tuesday as it launched an initiative to make sure all the money is used to fight disease.

WHO said exact figures are impossible obtain, but it estimates that governments spend roughly $50 billion on medicines every year. Of that amount between 10% and 25% of it is lost to fraud, bribery and diversion of pharmaceuticals, it says. (...)

Medicines change hands several times from production to distribution and eventually to the patient, opening up doors to corruption, the global health body said in a statement.

Corrupt practices also allow counterfeit and substandard medicines onto the market, further posing a threat to people's health, it said. (...)

Diverse artikler

The Lancet-redaktøren ut mot WHO 11.4.2013
– WHO må bli modigere og være langt frem i den politiske debatten, sier The Lancet-redaktør Richard Horton til Dagens Medisin.

STOCKHOLM: Under konefransen Global Helath - Beyond 2015! i forrige uke beskrev The Lancet-redaktør Richard Horton WHOs hovedkontor i Genéve som et «fryktelig trist sted», der «korridorene, i motsetning til tidligere, er veldig stille for tiden.»

– Fyller ikke funksjonen
Til Dagens Medisin sier Horton at han mener WHO er en svært viktig organisasjon.

– Men nå har organisasjonen lite ressurser og den fyller ikke funksjonene den er ment å fylle. Så nå må donorene støtte WHO slik at de får de pengene de trenger til å gjøre jobben sin. Jeg mener WHO må bli modigere og være langt frem i den politiske debatten, sier Horton.

Må fronte ansvaret
I fjor gikk Dr. Margaret Chan inn i en ny femårsperiode som leder av WHO.

– Chan er nå inne i sin andre periode, og jeg ønsker at hun vil bruke denne perioden til å være modig – og ta risiko for dem hun representerer. Og det er viktig å huske at hun representerer folk, og ikke medlemsland. Hennes oppgave er å stille myndigheter til ansvar, sier Horton til Dagens Medisin. (...)

Fågelinfluensans dödlighet kan ha överskattats 24.2.2012
Forskare menar att Världshälsoorganisationen, WHO, har räknat ut dödligheten i fågelinfluensan, H5N1, på felaktiga uppgifter. Enligt WHO har 586 personer smittats av fågelinfluensan, av dem har 346 dött. Det innebär en dödlighet på 59 procent.

H5N1 Forskarna har gjort en metaanalys och kommit fram till att många fler infekterats av H5N1-viruset eftersom WHO inte räknat in personer på landsbygden som inte kunnat ta sig till sjukhus, personer som inte har några symtom och andra faktorer. Som stöd för detta visar blodprover från 14 000 personer att mellan 0,2 till 5,6 procent smittats av viruset.

Enligt forskarna innebär det att flera miljoner av världens befolkning ska ha smittats av viruset, de flesta utan att märka av det. Det betyder att dödligheten skulle vara mycket lägre, under en procent, skriver Reuters.

Metaanalysen spär på en debatt som väcktes i slutet av förra året efter att amerikanska myndigheter ville få tidskrifterna Nature och Science att låta bli att publicera artiklar om hur fågelinfluensan lättare kan spridas till människor eftersom risken att informationen skulle hamna i fel händer var för stor.

Forskargrupperna pausade därefter frivilligt sin forskning under några månader. Enligt WHO behövs en analys av säkerhetsfrågorna kring studierna, men sedan bör de alltså bli tillgängliga. (...)

WHO vil have færre psykiske sygdomsdiagnoser 15.1.2012
Psykiske diagnoser griber om sig og skaber pres på billedet af, hvad der er normalt. WHO er bekymret for sygeliggørelsen.

Verdenssundhedsorganisationen WHO har taget hul på en ømtålelig revision af mere end 200 sygdomskategorier. Det drejer sig bl.a. om depression og ADHD, og målet er at reducere antallet af diagnoser, oplyser leder af projektet, dr. Geoffrey Reed, til Berlingske. Det er første gang, at WHO offentligt taler om projektet, der blandt andet skal imødekomme en - især vestlig - tendens til sygeliggørelse.

»Hvis man som vi har en masse diagnoser, der dækker over et bredt spektrum af menneskelige fænomener i den mindre alvorlige ende, risikerer man at sygeliggøre og medicinere ting, som kan være helt normale følelser og ikke sygelige,« siger Geoffrey Reed.

Med signalet erkender WHO, at antallet af diagnoser har taget overhånd. Resultatet af arbejdet forventes først færdigt i 2015, og endnu er der ikke sat navn eller antal på diagnoser, der skal ud. Men allerede nu kridter WHO banen op i en værdidebat om vores normalitetsbegreb, og Geoffrey Reed bekræfter, at marginalgrænser for diagnoser som depression og ADHD er til diskussion. (...)

Sju miljoner biverkningsrapporter till UMC i Uppsala 16.12.2011
Uppsala Monitoring Centre, som sköter WHO:s biverkningshantering kring läkemedel, har nu fått in över sju miljoner rapporter till Vigibase-databasen sedan starten 1968.

FARMAKOVIGILANS WHO:s säkerhetsövervakning (farmakovigilans) startade 1968 efter den världsomspännande Neurosedyn-katastrofen. Bara under 2011 har UMC fått in över en miljon rapporter, vilket är den största årliga ökningen någonsin.

– Farmakovigilans handlar om ett ständigt pågående och gnetande arbete med att hitta nya riskgrupper och risksituationer där en förändring av läkemedelsanvändningen skulle göra att problemet kunde undvikas, säger Sten Olsson, chef för WHO:s program för internationell läkemedelsuppföljning vid UMC.

Rapporterna skickas direkt till UMC, via de nationella myndigheterna, från både sjukvården, läkemedelsföretag och patienter. Det handlar om allt från traditionella biverkningar till andra läkemedelsrelaterade problem. (...)

WHO chief slams tobacco industry tactics (WHO-sjef langer ut mot tobakksindustriens taktikk) 10.10.2011
THE World Health Organization's chief has urged governments to unite against "big tobacco", accusing the industry of dirty tricks, bullying and immorality in its quest to keep people smoking.

WHO director-general Margaret Chan accused cashed-up tobacco firms of using lawsuits to try and subvert national laws and international conventions aimed at curbing cigarette sales. (...)

Antitobacco programs underfunded, WHO says (Antitobakkprogrammer underfinansiert, ifølge WHO)
CMAJ 2011;183(12):6 (September)
Tobacco control programs remain “seriously underfunded” worldwide, despite increases in revenue-generating tobacco taxes, the World Health Organization (WHO) reveals in its third report on the global tobacco epidemic.

The big picture of the epidemic remains largely “unchanged,” the WHO says, in part because of a lack of political will to finance antitobacco initiatives, although some countries have made progress to implement new control measures since 2009 (

Governments collect nearly US$133 billion in tobacco tax revenue each year, but spend less than US$1 billion on tobacco control, the WHO Report on the Global Tobacco Epidemic, 2011 reveals (

It’s a disparity that Armando Peruga, program manager of the WHO’s Tobacco Free Initiative, calls “basically ridiculous” and one that is particularly acute in low-and middle-income countries. (...)

WHO slår alarm over danskeres druk 21.9.2011
WHO anbefaler højere afgifter på alkohol for at dæmpe unges druk. R støtter forslaget.

Verdenssundhedsorganisationen WHO anbefaler den kommende danske regering at hæve afgifterne på alkohol og samtidig indføre en aldersgrænse på 18 år for køb af alle former for øl, vin og spiritus.

Anbefalingen er en del af en ny europæisk handlingsplan, som WHO netop har vedtaget for at komme de udbredte alkoholproblemer i Europa til livs.
I forhold til Danmark er WHO især bekymret over de unges druk, der igen og igen sætter verdensrekord. De seneste undersøgelser viser, at danske unge drikker næsten dobbelt så meget som andre europæiske unge.

»Det vil være godt at øge skatterne, og en 18-års-grænse vil være et særdeles godt tiltag,« siger Lars Møller, programdirektør i WHOs Europakontor i København.

De Radikale støtter op om WHOs anbefalinger og nævner i sit partiprogram en fordobling af afgifterne på øl og vin. Det vil betyde, at en almindelig pilsnerøl stiger med 77 ører.

»Skat og en højere aldersgrænse er nogle af de håndtag, man skal bruge, hvis man skal få de unge til at drikke mindre,« siger Manu Sareen (R). (...)

Health is state of physical, mental, and social wellbeing
BMJ 2011; 343:d5358 (23 August)
Huber and colleagues define survival, not health. Theirs is a reductionist approach, which perhaps tries to mitigate healthcare’s mission creep and the inflated expectations laid at its door.1

The 1948 World Health Organization definition is an aspiration, but just because it is difficult to achieve, do we have to abandon it?

Far reaching as complete wellbeing may be, it calls on spheres other than healthcare to help deliver this definition of health. It calls on political and economic domains to contribute in more innovative and imaginative ways, rather than to delegate and pass the buck.

The components of “wellbeing” vary between people, societies, cultures, and eras. Maslow’s “hierarchy of needs” encapsulates many of the headings,2 even if the pyramidal order in which they are arranged is questionable. Freedom from fear, including fear of ill health, is another component. Balance and perspective are also key foundations, while the central fulcrum is the ability to love.

Wellbeing is a concept shared across all human boundaries and is the final common pathway to which all these varying components lead. To paraphrase the original definition, health is the state of physical, mental, and social wellbeing, which gives a sense of completeness. (...)

“Irrelevant” WHO outpaced by younger rivals
BMJ 2011; 343:d5012 (9 August)

The World Health Organization’s critics accuse it of being bogged down in red tape and internal politics. However, attempts at reform are raising concerns over conflicts of interest. Nigel Hawkes reports

For as long as many can remember, the World Health Organization has been facing a crisis. From decade to decade, the nature of that crisis might change, but it never quite goes away.

Despite its past accomplishments, WHO fits increasingly uneasily into a world with a growing number of international players who seem fleeter of foot and deeper of pocket. Set up as an agency to provide advice to governments at a time when government health departments were the prime movers in health policy and delivery, it seems passé beside such upstarts as the Global Fund to Fight Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria, the GAVI Alliance (formerly known as the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization), and private philanthropies such as the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. (...)

A wide range of non-governmental organisations were unhappy, and launched a protest at the assembly. Patrick Durisch, speaking on behalf of Health Action International, Knowledge Ecology International, the Third World Network, the Berne Declaration, the People’s Health Movement and International Baby Food Action Network (IBFAN) said that the new policy raised conflicts of interest for WHO. Dr Chan’s plan presented “an unrealistic and empirically unsupported assumption that all stakeholders will collaborate to advance the public interest.” Any changes in governance structures should deal with those conflicts of interest in a realistic manner, he said, and members of WHO should guard against initiatives that would give private interests and donors a greater role in its governance.

“Nobody was being very clear” says Patti Rundall of Baby Milk Action, a long term opponent of food giant Nestlé. “Margaret Chan said, in effect, ‘we want your money’ and that if it was forthcoming, WHO would meet its partners’ expectations, You can’t do that and also meet the expectations of the member states.

“We depend on WHO being a health advocate that puts health first. Without that, we wouldn’t now have 60 countries banning advertising of formula milk for babies. Involving private companies in setting priorities creates an unsurmountable conflict of interest. Margaret Chan says that she’ll only deal with the ‘good’ companies, but how will she know?” (...)

WHO Under Spotlight Over Drug Manual Copyright Dispute 22.7.2011
Some of Australia's most respected medicine experts, who compiled a doctors' guide to children's drugs published by the world's top health body, were accused of copying dozens of passages from a pre-existing publication, The Australian reported Friday.

The World Health Organization (WHO) launched an investigation into how much material was duplicated from an earlier source in its 528-page WHO Model Formulary for Children.

In a letter sent to the WHO in Geneva, the publishers of the Australian Medicines Handbook (AMH), an independent guide for Australian doctors, said that a comparison turned up 50 instances in which "substantial passages from the WHO Formulary ... are identical to the corresponding passages in the AMH."

"It is difficult to escape the conclusion that the passages referred to were copied from the AMH, especially as we understand the content of the WHO Formulary was prepared in Australia, where the AMH is widely distributed," the letter sent in December said.

The letter also warned the WHO there might be more than 50 examples of copied passages because AMH staff had analyzed only about 60 percent of the WHO guide's pages since being alerted to the problem by an AMH editor who recognized her words in the WHO document.

In the letter, a copy of which was obtained by The Australian, AMH general manager Peter Farrell said that the examples "appear to represent a significant breach of our intellectual property rights." (...)

Copying dispute over drug manual 22.7.2011
SOME of Australia's most respected medicines experts, who compiled a doctors' guide to children's drugs published by the world's top health body, have been accused of copying dozens of passages from a pre-existing publication.

The World Health Organisation has launched an investigation into how much material has been duplicated from an earlier source in its 528-page WHO Model Formulary for Children.

In a letter sent to the WHO in Geneva, the publishers of the Australian Medicines Handbook, an independent medicines guide for Australian doctors, said a comparison had turned up 50 instances where "substantial passages from the WHO Formulary . . . are identical to the corresponding passages in the AMH".

"It is difficult to escape the conclusion that the passages referred to were copied from the AMH, especially as we understand the content of the WHO Formulary was prepared in Australia, where the AMH is widely distributed," the letter sent last December said. (...)

Letter to the 129th WHO Executive Board on conflicts of interest, WHO reform and the future of financing 24.5.2011
NGO letter on Conflicts of Interest, Future Financing, Reform and governance of the WHO.

Dear Members of the Executive Board,

We appreciate the need for a reform of the World Health Organization (WHO) that involves the reshaping of its financing in order to make it a more effective institution that truly serves the interests of all the member states in their efforts to pursue the highest attainable standard of health. However in so doing, it is important that the nature of WHO as an independent, member state driven institution is assured and reinforced. This will require member states to take an active role in the oversight of both WHO financing and the direction and scope of the reform process. This cannot be left to the WHO secretariat alone or to small informal groups of member states.

We are writing to express our concerns regarding the management of conflicts of interest and the role of private bodies in the financing and the governance of WHO, a multilateral entity and specialized agency of the United Nations (UN) that derives much of its legitimacy from its independence and commitment to serving the public health interests of member states. (...)

WHO takes on chronic disease 29.4.2011
MOSCOW — The World Health Organization focused for decades on infectious diseases, but now it’s putting non-communicable diseases near the top of its agenda.

The fight against heart disease, diabetes, stroke, lung cancer and chronic respiratory disease may not seem as heroic as the struggle against smallpox or H1N1, but chronic illnesses account for 63 percent of deaths worldwide — 70 percent in the United States and 90 percent in Russia.

“And these are preventable,” said Margaret Chan, director general of WHO, at a three-day series of meetings here this week devoted to chronic diseases. “People don’t have to suffer. People don’t have to die.”

No tobacco and less sugar, fat and especially salt are WHO’s top targets; reducing alcohol consumption and increasing exercise are right behind. Those factors alone account for 25 million of the 36 million deaths attributable to chronic diseases annually, according to WHO, and place a huge economic burden on families and nations. (...)

WHO warns of enormous burden of chronic disease 27.4.2011
(Reuters) - Chronic illnesses like cancer, heart disease and diabetes have reached global epidemic proportions and now cause more deaths than all other diseases combined, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Wednesday.

In its first worldwide report on so-called non-communicable diseases, or NCDs, the United Nations health body said the conditions caused more than half of all deaths in 2008 and pose a greater threat than infectious diseases such as malaria, HIV and tuberculosis (TB) -- even in many poorer countries.

"The rise of chronic noncommunicable diseases presents an enormous challenge," WHO Director-General Dr Margaret Chan, who launched the report at a meeting in Moscow, said in a statement. (...)

Medical errors in top 10 killers: WHO 20.4.2011
MUMBAI: Medicine heals, but this fact doesn`t hold true for every 300th patient admitted to hospital. Call it the law of averages or blame human error for it, but the World Health Organization believes that one in 10 hospital admissions leads to an adverse event and one in 300 admissions in death.

An adverse event could range from the patient having to spend an extra day in hospital or missing a dose of medicine, said Dr Nikhil Datar, a gynaecologist and health activist. Unintended medical errors are a big threat to patient safety.

Although there is no Indian data available on this topic, WHO lists it among the top 10 killers in the world. While a British National Health System survey in 2009 reported that 15% of its patients were misdiagnosed, an American study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association in 2000 quantified this problem most effectively. (...)

WHO warns anti-smoking campaigners not to become too close to drug firms
BMJ 2011; 342:d2430 (14 April)
The World Health Organization has warned health professionals working in tobacco control not to become too closely involved with drug companies that produce smoking cessation products.

The warning came last month at a meeting on smoking prevention in Madrid that was hosted by the National Committee to Prevent Smoking, which represents most Spanish anti-tobacco organisations, and which was sponsored by Pfizer, GlaxoSmithKline, and McNeil—all of which make treatments to help smoking cessation.

Armando Peruga, programme manager of WHO’s Tobacco Free Initiative, advised health professionals “to be independent and guided by scientific evidence.”

“We have to keep a distance from the tobacco industry, but we also have to maintain some distance from any other industry that can have a commercial interest in this issue,” he said.

“Today the tobacco industry is starting to joke that we have been sold to the pharmaceutical industry, something we must be aware of,” he added. (...)

Livsviktige medisiner kan miste effekten 7.4.2011
- Over 100.000 mennesker i Norge kan ha brukt antibiotika skrevet ut til andre. Dette kan ha store konsekvenser både for den som låner og for den som låner ut, advarer fag- og kvalitetsdirektør i Vitusapotek Hanne Andresen. Problematikk med resistensutvikling henger nøye sammen med fornuftig og riktig bruk av antibiotika.

Hele 19 % av den voksne befolkningen i Norge oppgir å ha brukt legemidler skrevet ut til andre. Dette viser tall fra en undersøkelse Respons Analyse har utført for Vitusapotek. Alle reseptpliktige legemidler er skrevet ut på bakgrunn av en diagnose stilt av lege. Ulike typer bakterieinfeksjoner krever ulike behandling. Dersom medisinen skal ha optimal effekt må den brukes riktig.

Ifølge WHO er framveksten av antibakteriell resistens, altså antall sykdommer som ikke lenger kan kureres ved antibiotika, et stort problem på verdensbasis. (...)

Reforming the World Health Organization
JAMA. 2011 (March 29)
In December 2010, Jack Chow,1 the former World Health Organization (WHO) assistant director-general, asked, “Is the WHO becoming irrelevant?” A month later, the WHO's executive board considered the agency's future within global health governance. After a year-long consultation with member states on its financing, Director-General Margaret Chan called the WHO overextended and unable to respond with speed and agility to today's global health challenges.2 (...)

WHO Director-General Responds To Draft Report On Agency's Handling Of H1N1 Pandemic 29.3.2011
WHO Director-General Margaret Chan on Monday responded to the first results of a probe into the agency's response to the H1N1 (swine flu) pandemic, Agence France-Presse reports. While calling attention to where the external panel committee commended the agency's actions, Chan also addressed the criticisms and recommendations issued in the draft report (3/28). Her comments came as the review committee held its "fourth and final public session" in Geneva to receive "feedback from countries and organizations on its preliminary report," CIDRAP News reports (Schnirring, 3/28). (...)

WHO's Response to H1N1 Pandemic Was Flawed 11.3.2011
LONDON — An expert panel commissioned by the World Health Organization to investigate its handling of the swine flu pandemic has slammed mistakes made by the U.N. body and warned tens of millions could die if there is a severe flu outbreak in the future.

The U.N. health agency established the review committee to evaluate its performance after the 2009 global outbreak of swine flu, or H1N1. In a draft report released on Thursday, the committee said WHO performed well in many ways, but made crucial errors.

The group described WHO's definition of a pandemic and its phases as "needlessly complex," criticized the agency's decision to keep the members of its advisory committee secret, and said potential conflicts of interest among those experts, some of whom had ties to drug companies, were not well managed. (...)

Designer drug abuse out of control: U.N. drugs board (FNs-panel for substanser opplyser at designerdop er ute av kontroll) 2.3.2011
(Reuters) - The problem of so-called "designer drugs" is running out of control in many regions of the world, the U.N. global drugs watchdog said Wednesday.

The International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) said detailed instructions for how to make designer drugs, which are slightly altered to bypass existing control systems, are often shared via the Internet.

The report said the problem was "escalating out of control" and "major efforts" were needed to counter it.

"Given the health risks posed by the abuse of designer drugs, we urge governments to adopt national control measures to prevent the manufacture, trafficking in and abuse of these substances," Hamid Ghodse, the INCB's president, said at a briefing in London as the board's annual report was published. (...)

Mephedrone is available through the Internet and also through retail outlets known as "smart shops," sometimes advertised as bath salt, plant food or research chemical to avoid detection and legal proceedings.

The drug has effects similar to cocaine, amphetamine and MDMA, or "ecstasy." A number of reports of deaths from using it have been reported in recent years in Britain and Europe.

"Mephedrone has now become a problem drug of abuse in Europe, North America, Southeast Asia and in Australia and New Zealand," the INCB report said.

It added that mephedrone was just "one example of a large number of designer drugs that are being abused." (...)

Good Governance for Medicines (26.1.2011)
Theft, extortion and abuse …the US$ 5.3 trillion-plus spent on health services

worldwide each year are an obvious target for corruption. In fact, Transparency International estimates that 10 to 25 % of global public health procurement spending is siphoned off and stolen. Life-saving resources are being snatched away from the millions of people that need them most. The pharmaceutical sector, with its US$ 750 billion global market value, is vulnerable to fraud.

The Good Governance for Medicines programme's goal is to improve this situation. Guided by WHO’s Medicines Strategy 2004-2007 and launched in late 2004, the programme is raising awareness of abuse in the public pharmaceutical sector and promoting good governance. Its ultimate aim is to ensure that pharmaceutical spending is not misappropriated and essential medicines reach people - not the black market.

The World Bank has identified corruption as the single greatest obstacle to economic and social development. And as the Good Governance project increases in momentum, more and more public health ministers and national medicines regulatory authorities are taking up the challenge to address it. (...)

WHO Future In Question; Debate Over Industry Representation 17.1.2011
A seemingly overworked and impoverished World Health Organization opened its Executive Board session today with calls for reform amid deep concerns about its financial future. Meanwhile, dissension arose over an industry representative named by the WHO secretariat to a new research and development funding working group, sparking the WHO director general to cast doubt on the role of industry in such groups. (...)

Chan, who appeared to be near tears, said the secretariat “diligently” followed the process articulated by the WHA. She demanded to know from members – specifically Thailand – why it would be unacceptable to have a candidate with a pharmaceutical background in the working group and said that it would be naïve to think that all participants in such matters – even the WHO – have no vested interest.

Herrling brings “unique expertise” in this group, she said, and she did not see how “a group of this nature” could totally exclude people with rich experience in the pharma sector. If all people with a pharmaceutical background are unacceptable, in some working groups “we will have nobody,” she said. Two countries proposed that industry representatives such as Herrling should instead be invited to appear before the working group to offer their insights.

Chan’s remark about other working groups prompted commentary afterward among observers that it could be read as an admission that all working groups have conflicts of interest. (...)

Expert panel to view confidential swine flu papers (Ekspertpanel gjennomgår hemmelige sineinfluensadokumenter) 19.5.2010
GENEVA -- An expert panel investigating the World Health Organization's response to last year's swine flu outbreak said Wednesday it wants to see confidential exchanges between the U.N. body and drug companies.

The 29-member panel will seek WHO records and correspondence from before and after the H1N1 strain was declared a pandemic in June, said committee chairman Harvey Fineberg, who is also president of the Institute of Medicine in Washington. (...)

400.000 piger kan dø af A-vitamin-tilskud 28.4.2010
Hundredtusindvis af piger risikerer at dø, hvis WHO som planlagt giver dem A-vitamintilskud ved fødslen, viser nyt stort dansk studie af børn i Afrika. (...)

Men mens A-vitamin gavner drengebørn, øger tilskud med vitaminet dødeligheden markant blandt piger, viser et nyt, dansk studie, ifølge (...)

Dødeligheden øges nemlig med hele 80 procent blandt piger, der først har fået tilskud af A-vitamin og derefter DTP-vaccine, viser studiet.

De danske resultater er offentliggjort i det velansete tidsskrift BMJ. WHO har endnu ikke taget resultaterne til efterretning. (...)

Frykter utbrudd av meslinger 18.3.2010
(...) Barnesykdommen meslinger er på fremmarsj i Vest-Europa. Grunnen er at alternative miljøer nekter å la barna bli vaksinert, sier Verdens Helseorganisasjon. (...)

Spesialist i infeksjonssykdommer, Gunnar Hasle, mener det er forkastelig at enkelte foreldre ikke vil vaksinere barna sine mot meslinger. (...)

"Big Tobacco" still on the march, WHO warns ("Big Tobacco" stadig i fremgang advarer WHO) 26.2.2010
GENEVA (Reuters) - Governments must do more to protect workers in bars, restaurants and the entertainment sector from harmful smoke, and curb tobacco advertising and sponsorship, the World Health Organization said on Friday. (...)

Vaccinmakare försvarar sig mot kritik 27.1.2010
Representanter för de stora vaccintillverkarna försvarade sig i går under en offentlig utfrågning. De menar att de inte varit med och skapat en falsk bild av hotet med svininfluensan.

Vid en så kallad publik hearing i Europarådets parlamentariska församling, PACE, på tisdagen nekade läkemedelsindustrin till anklagelser om att de skulle ha spritt en falsk bild av hotet från influensan. Heringen hölls efter att den tyska politikern och epidemiologen Wolfgang Wodarg presenterat misstankar om att industrin påverkat Europas myndigheter. (...)

WHO denies drugs firms swayed its flu decisions 26.1.2010
WHO says its response to flu might have been better

STRASBOURG, France, Jan 26 (Reuters) - The World Health Organisation (WHO) denied on Tuesday that it was unduly influenced by drugs companies to exaggerate the dangers of the H1N1 flu virus.

Pharmaceutical firms picked up multi-million dollar vaccination contracts when the United Nations health agency declared the flu a pandemic last June.

Although many millions around the world have been infected with H1N1, and many thousands have died, the pandemic proved milder than health experts had originally feared.

Accusations from some politicians and media that the WHO relied too much on advice from experts in the pay of the pharmaceutical industry -- who could have a vested interest in dramatising the crisis -- have triggered an internal review by the WHO and an inquiry by the Council of Europe, a European Union human rights watchdog. [ID:nLDE60B16L] (...)

WHO angry at claims swine flu is fake pandemic 14.1.2010
A senior World Health Organisation official has poured scorn on claims that the agency has been influenced by the pharmaceutical industry and overstated the swine flu pandemic.

Keiji Fukuda, special adviser to the WHO director-general on pandemic influenza, told reporters that “the world is going through a real pandemic” and “the description of it as a fake is both wrong and irresponsible”. (...)

Dr Fukuda is not best pleased by that stance, saying that the WHO “has been balanced and truthful in the information it has provided to the public. It has not underplayed and not overplayed the risk it poses to the public”. He added that Dr Wodarg’s allegation that this is not a pandemic “is scientifically wrong and historically inaccurate”, noting that the WHO’s basic definition of the latter “is the same. There is worldwide spread of a disease,” he said.

Dr Fukuda also denied that the agency has been in cahoots with the pharmaceutical sector over H1N1. “Has the WHO been influenced by industry? The answer is, 'no'," he said, adding that to remain free from undue influence it has had in place “routine protections against conflict of interest. This is true for a long time but also during this particular pandemic”. (...)

- Jeg tror ikke WHO har latt seg påvirke 8.1.2010
Helseminister Anne-Grete Strøm-Erichsen tok «pandemiskandalen» opp med WHO-sjef Margaret Chan. (...)

- Jeg hadde møte med generalsekretær Margaret Chan. WHO avviser kritikken om at de lot seg påvirke av legemiddelindustrien da de erklærte pandemi i fjor sommer. Jeg forstår også på Chan at WHO er opptatt av åpenhet, og jeg tror ikke WHO har latt seg påvirke, sier Strøm-Erichsen til Nettavisen. (...)

- WHOs influensaplan er en medisinsk skandale 6.1.2010
(VG Nett) Sjefen for Europarådets helsekomité mener vaksinebeslutningene rundt svineinfluensapandemien var påvirket av legemiddelindustrien. (...)

- Den falske epidemien var en av tiårets største medisinske skandaler, tordner han, ifølge blant annet bransjebladet Pharma Times og britiske Independent.

Wodarg skal også stå bak en debatt og mulig undersøkelse i helsekomiteen av hvorvidt WHOs dømmekraft har vært påvirket av legemiddelindustrien. Debatten skal foregå denne måneden. (...)

I en artikkel publisert i tungtveiende British Medical Journal nyttårsaften advarer WHO-sjef Margaret Chan mot å tro at pandemien er over.

- Vi må passe oss for likegyldighet, sier hun. (...)

WHO Advisor Secretly Pads Pockets with Big Pharma Money 7.1.2010
A Finnish member of the World Health Organization board, an advisor on vaccines, has received 6 million Euros for his research center from the vaccine manufacturer GlaxoSmithKline.

Although WHO promises transparency, this conflict of interest is not available for the public to see at WHO’s homepage. (...)

According to documents acquired through the Danish Freedom of Information Act, Eskola’s Finnish institute, THL, received almost 6.3 million Euros from GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) for research on vaccines during 2009. GlaxoSmithKline produces the H1N1-vaccine ‘Pandemrix,’ which the Finnish government -- following recommendations from THL and WHO -- purchased for a national pandemic reserve stockpile.

Several other WHO experts also have financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry--a double role that notably is not published by WHO. (...)

Corrupt practices cost healthcare $23 billion 18.12.2009
Fraud and abuse in healthcare costs individual governments as much as $23 billion a year, according to estimates from the World Health Organization (WHO). In a fact sheet on its website, the WHO explains that corruption occurs throughout all stages of the medicines chain, from R&D to dispensing and promotion, and results in the loss of enormous amounts of public health resources. An estimated 10–25% of public procurement spending, including on pharmaceuticals, is lost to corruption. In developing countries, however, up to 89% leakage of procurement and operational costs has been observed. (...)

Legemiddelindustriens makt i WHO og i Norge - spørsmål nr 216 til skriftlig besvarelse 30.11.2009
Det vises til ekspedisjon av 19. november 2009 fra Stortingets president med følgende spørsmål til skriftlig besvarelse fra representanten Geir-Ketil Hansen:
På hvilken måte blir dette tatt opp av regjeringa i WHO, og på hvilken måte jobber regjeringen for å stramme inn overfor legemiddelindustriens makt, i WHO og i Norge? (...)

Experter samarbetar med industrin 30.11.2009
PANDEMI. Rader med experter hjälper WHO att hantera hotet från svininfluensan. Men flera av rådgivarna har kopplingar till läkemedels­industrin, visar SvD:s granskning. Kommittén som ger råd om själva pandemin är hemlig. (...)

En central grupp sedan svininfluensans utbrott i våras är WHO:s ”Emergency Committe”. Baserat på information från denna kriskommittée har WHO:s generaldirektör Margaret Chan fattat beslut om olika pandeminivåer. (...)

Vilka är medlemmarna i kommittén?
–Namnen på medlemmarna i kommittén är hemliga. Man vill inte att de ska kunna utsättas för påtryckningar utifrån. De är valda utifrån sina expertkunskaper om influensa, virusspridning och sjukdomskontroll, säger Hartl.

Varför är namnen hemliga? Vilka slags påtryckningar riskerar medlemmarna?

–Jag kan inte gå in på det. Men det viktiga är att medlemmarna i kommittén inte behöver ta hänsyn till någon eller någonting utanför kommittén i sin rådgivning till WHO:s generaldirektör, säger Gregory Hartl.

Har någon medlem i kommittén koppling till eller samarbete med läkemedelsindustrin?

–Jag vet inte vilka medlemmarna är. Jag tror att kontroller görs om de har kopplingar till läkemedelsindustrin.

Bör inte WHO vara transparent när det gäller hur beslut fattas om sjukdomar som berör miljontals människor?

–I kampen mot denna epidemi måste man samarbeta med många parter. Det inkluderar regeringar, frivilligorganisationer och läkemedelsindustrin. Vi måste hitta de bästa lösningarna för att skydda människors liv. Att rädda liv är allra viktigast för oss, säger Gregory Hartl. (...)

WHO vil sende eksperter til Norge 4.11.2009
Bekymret over at så mange har dødd av svineinfluensa. Norge sier nei. (...)

Den assisterende generaldirektøren i WHO skal ha tatt kontakt med helsedirektør Bjørn Inge Larsen.

- De tilbød sin assistanse. Det var snakk om å sende noen fra WHO hit for å bistå oss, sier Strøm-Erichsen til VG.

Men Norge har foreløpig sagt nei til hjelp.

- Vi har løpende dialog med WHO, men avventer tilbudet om assistanse, sier helseministeren. (NTB)

WHO agrees plan to speed up research on risk to human health from climate change
BMJ 2008;337:a2081 (14 October)
The World Health Organization has agreed to a plan to speed up research to help governments formulate policies to counter the risks posed by climate change to human health. (...)

Commission on Social Determinants of Health - Final Report 28.8.2008
Closing the gap in a generation: Health equity through action on the social determinants of health

Social justice is a matter of life and death. It affects the way people live, their consequent chance of illness, and their risk of premature death. We watch in wonder as life expectancy and good health continue to increase in parts of the world and in alarm as they fail to improve in others. (...)

(Anm: Commission on Social Determinants of Health FINAL REPORT ( 28.8.2008).)

Tackling health inequities
BMJ 2008;337:a1526 (3 September)
WHO report calls for global action to ensure health equity within and between countries (...)

WHO Commission Says Equity Is The New Agenda 28.8.2008
A new report from the World Health Organization suggests that the reason most people in the world do not enjoy the good health that their bodies potentially offer from a biological perspective is due to a "toxic combination of policies, economics, and politics" and if this is to change, the world must unite to put equity at the centre of the agenda for human health and development. (...)

WHO calls for better living conditions to reduce health gap
BMJ 2008;337:a1451 (27 August 2008)
Improving daily living conditions is the key to reducing the health inequalities between rich and poor countries, says a report published by the World Health Organization, which aims to close the gap within the next generation.

The report summarises the findings of a three year investigation by WHO’s commission on the social determinants of health, whose members include leading policy makers, academics, former heads of state, and former ministers of health. (...)

Advarer mot dødelig pandemi 21.7.2008
- Verden gjør for lite for å beskytte seg mot et globalt utbrudd av dødelig influensa som kan koste 50 millioner menneskeliv, mener britiske politikere.

En komite i Overhuset i London retter krass kritikk mot Verdens helseorganisasjon WHOs håndtering av saken. WHOs system for overvåking av og varsling om sykdomsfare er for svakt, skrev London-avisene Daily Telegraph og The Independent tirsdag. (...)

Chronic diseases top causes of deaths globally: WHO 20.5.2008
GENEVA (Reuters) - Chronic conditions such as heart disease and stroke, often associated with a Western lifestyle, have become the chief causes of death globally, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Tuesday.

The shift from infectious diseases including tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS and malaria -- traditionally the biggest killers -- to noncommunicable diseases is set to continue to 2030, the U.N. agency said in a report. (...)

Misslyckat möte om läkemedel till fattiga 5.5.2008
Det internationella möte som i förra veckan diskuterade hur världen ska få fram billigare läkemedel till fattiga resulterade inte heller denna gång i några konkreta åtgärder.

globalt En arbetsgrupp från WHO har under två år arbetat med att ta fram förslag på hur man kan främja forskning och utveckling inom medicinska områden som framförallt drabbar fattiga länder. Parallellt med gruppens arbete har man hållit tre internationella möten där förslagen har förhandlats. Det andra mötet hölls i november förra året. Målet var då att enas om en handlingsplan som WHO kunde rösta igenom på nästa World Health Assembly som hålls om några veckor. Men förhandlingarna strandade och länderna kom överens om att ha ytterligare ett möte. (...)

Verdens helseorganisasjon (WHO) oppsummerer 2007:
- Stor global innsats 1.1.2008
(VG Nett) En felles global innsats for bedre helse har satt sine spor, ifølge WHO. (...)

Vil sikre barnemedisin 17.12.2007
(VG Nett) Verdens helseorganisasjon (WHO) har startet en kampanje som skal sørge for trygg medisin til alle barn.

Tall fra Unicef viser at antall døde barn under fem år i år vil runde ti millioner. Halvparten av dødsfallene skyldes ifølge Unicef mangel på riktig medisin. (...)

The List of Essential Medicines for Children presenterer 206 legemidler som alle er garantert å være sikre for barn, og som behandler sykdommer som bør prioriteres verden over. (...)

(Anm: Ingen legemidler er "garantert å være sikre", verken for barn eller voksne.)

WHO:s lista över barnläkemedel klar 11.12.2007
Världshälsoorganisationen, WHO, har publicerat den första versionen av sin lista över vilka essentiella läkemedel som är anpassade och säkra för barn. Samtidigt skriver organisationen en forskningsagenda som uppmanar till mer forskning kring barn och läkemedel.

Det finns 206 läkemedel på WHO:s nya lista över essentiella läkemedel för barn (List of Essential Medicines for Children). Alla läkemedel på listan är garanterat säkra för barn och behandlar sjukdomar som bör prioriteras i världen. (...)

Förhandlingar mellan WHO och industrin strandade 13.11.2007
I helgen avslutades det andra förhandlingstillfället mellan WHO och den internationella läkemedelsindustrin. Målet är att få fram en handlingplan för hur världens fattiga länder ska få läkemedel. Men mötet resulterade inte i något konkret förslag och tiden håller därmed på att rinna ut för den förhandling som ska vara klar i maj nästa år.

Arbetsgruppen Intergovernmental working group on public health, innovation and intellectual property bildades i maj 2006 på uppdrag av WHO:s medlemsländer. Målet med arbetsgruppen är att de till maj 2008, då nästa World Health Assembly hålls, ska ha tagit fram en handlingsplan för hur man ska förmå läkemedelsindustrin att utveckla mer läkemedel för de sjukdomar som framförallt drabbar människor i fattiga länder. Men efter att det andra förhandlingstillfället mellan industrin och WHO avslutades i helgen ser prognoserna sämre ut för att en handlingsplan faktiskt kommer att ta form. (...)

WHO Aims to Balance Drug Companies, Poor 5.11.2007
GENEVA — The U.N. health chief urged countries on Monday to come up with new ways to make medicine for HIV/AIDS and other diseases more affordable in the world's poorest countries, without stifling innovation among pharmaceutical companies.

The World Health Organization's 193 member states are hoping to forge a global strategy on the highly divisive issues of drug development, patenting and pricing by the end of the week.

"People should not be denied access to lifesaving and health-promoting interventions for unfair reasons," said Dr. Margaret Chan, WHO's director-general, in opening the agency's first meeting devoted to the subject since May, when the United States walked out of a negotiating session and dissociated itself from a WHO resolution. (...)

Bredere støtte til FN
Kronikk i Dagbladet, 23. september 2007 23.9.2007

Legger vi for lite vekt på selve FN når vi arbeider for en verden mer preget av FNs verdier? (...)

Som opptakt til et svar, la meg dele en personlig erfaring fra min tid i Verdens Helseorganisasjon (WHO), fra 1998 til 2000. WHO har i sin konstitusjon fra 1948 et mandat som ”den ledende organisasjonen innen verdens helse”. Denne bevisstheten sitter sterkt i veggene i organisasjonen. På slutten av 90-tallet møtte vi stadig flere andre aktører som spilte en rolle på helseområdet; fra Verdensbankens mange programmer, den internasjonale legemiddelindustrien og en voksende del av privat sektor, like til de nye store private giverne som Ted Turner og Bill Gates. Mange av disse er ute etter raske resultater, som Lothe Salvesen skriver. Men raske resultater er ikke bare negativt. Mange så at innsatsen på vaksineområdet stagnerte gjennom 90-tallet, og at det tradisjonelle FN-systemet ikke greide å mobilisere ny kraft og nye ressurser. Min erfaring var at deler av FN-systemet kunne fremstå som tungrodd, lite rede til omstilling og litt for mye opptatt av at mandatet gir status og rolle. (...)

Ny rapport fra Verdens Helseorganisasjon:
Depresjon verst for helsa 7.9.2007
Depresjon setter deg mer ut av spill enn en rekke kroniske sykdommer, ifølge Verdens Helseorganisasjon (WHO). (...)

Ellinor F. Major, divisjonsdirektør i Sosial- og helsedirektoratet, støtter Holtes synspunkter, men kommer samtidig med en gledelig nyhet: Ferske tall fra den siste levekårsundersøkelsen utført i 2005 viser en tydelig nedgang både for angst og depresjon. Fra 1998 til 2005 sank forekomsten blant 25-64-åringer fra 10,6 til 8,5 prosent.

- Dette er svært positivt. Resultatene er imidlertid så ferske at vi ikke har fått analysert dem ennå, så vi vet ikke helt forklaringen bak, sier Major til DinSide Helse. (...)

WHO Presses Development of Cheap Drugs 23.5.2007
The U.N. health agency approved a resolution Wednesday urging experts to find new ways of financing medicine and vaccine development to lower drug prices and improve worldwide availability.

The World Health Organization's members agreed on the resolution by consensus without a vote, a day after U.S. delegates walked out of a negotiating session aimed at bridging differences among the agency's 193 members over the highly divisive issues of drug development, patenting and pricing.

"The United States cannot accept this resolution," said Dr. John Agwunobi, U.S. assistant health secretary. He told WHO members that the U.S. would not block consensus, but would dissociate itself from the statement. (…)

Neurological disorders affect millions globally: WHO report 27.2.2007
27 FEBRUARY 2007 | BRUSSELS/GENEVA -- A new report from the World Health Organization (WHO) shows that neurological disorders, ranging from epilepsy to Alzheimer disease, from stroke to headache, affect up to one billion people worldwide. Neurological disorders also include brain injuries, neuroinfections, multiple sclerosis and Parkinson disease.

The report, Neurological disorders: Public health challenges, reveals that of the one billion people affected worldwide, 50 million suffer from epilepsy and 24 million from Alzheimer and other dementias. Neurological disorders affect people in all countries, irrespective of age, sex, education or income. (...)

Ex-WHO director rings in Dickey anniversary 2.2.2007
Dr. Gro Harlem Brundtland, former director general of the World Health Organization, pressed for international collaboration on issues of health and sustainable development in her keynote address Thursday, a part of the celebrations for the John Sloan Dickey Center's 25th anniversary.

"There is no alternative to building a moral and scientific basis for taking more shared responsibility across nations," she said. "It is up to each and every one of us to do our part in making that happen in our own society and across the world." (...)

Brundtland emphasized that an increasingly connected and globalized world will mean a more "common future," requiring collaboration among both public and private sectors. She spoke against the "liberalistic idea that states should retreat and leave most issues to the market," maintaining that government aid can be effective in addressing health and security issues. (...)

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