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The Pfizer whistleblower in my CounterPunch story “Did Pfizer Illegally Market Its New HIV/AIDS Drug?” has contacted the Office of Inspector General at the Department of Health and Human Services with her concerns about what she alleges is Pfizer’s illegal premarketing of the HIV/AIDS drug maraviroc. The Pfizer whistleblower just forwarded the response she received from an agent at the OIG:
I just wanted to send you a quick note to let you know that I have received your emails. I am still in trial, but I do want to meet with you in the next week or two. I will contact you (probably later next week) to set up a time to meet up. If you have any additional informaiton, feel free to send it along.
Special Agent NAME REDACTED
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Office of Inspector General
50 Kennedy Plaza, Suite 750
Providence, RI 02903
One reason the OIG is interested in this situation is that Pfizer has been forced to sign not just one, but two corporate integrity agreements (CIA) with this agency (download here), promising to conduct their business in an ethical manner.
Pfizer is obligated to notify the OIG of all “reportable events” within 30 days, such as suspicions of any illegal behavior. If Pfizer would not do this they would be in violation of the terms of the CIA and could receive fines, or, at worst, be excluded from federal health care programs.
Peter Rost, M.D., is a former Vice President of Pfizer. He became well known in 2004 when he emerged as the first drug company executive to speak out in favor of reimportation of drugs. He is the author of “The Whistleblower, Confessions of a Healthcare Hitman.” See: http://the-whistleblower-by-peter-rost.blogspot.com/