Big Pharma’s Clinical Drug Trials Are Killing Thousands Overseas

pharma10th February 2014

By  Mary West

Guest Writer for  Wake Up World

It appears that the the people of India are viewed as human guinea pigs or expendable commodities by some unethical segments of  Big Pharma.

Large pharmaceutical companies are testing their new drugs in India, as the country is highly populated and has very little regulatory framework. But, tragically, many citizens there are being killed in these clinical drug trials.

India has become a hotbed for testing new chemical entities (NCEs), drugs that have not been approved for the market, in Phase II and Phase III clinical trials. Most of the drugs are from huge pharmaceutical firms from the West.

Controversy has erupted in the country over the large number of fatalities from testing NCEs. The clinical trials have led to the deaths of 1,542 people between 2010 and 2012. While officials contend only 54 of these had a definite link to the trials, even this number is far too high.

Why has the Indian government allowed the poorest of their countrymen to be subjects for clinical trials that appear to be putting their lives at risk? Part of the answer could be due to money. To say business is booming is an understatement. During 2010-2011, the Indian clinical trial industry was valued at $450 million. The industry has grown at approximately 13 percent per year and is expected to exceed $1 billion by 2016.

Efforts to Stop the Corruption

Voices within India are speaking out against the corruption, and are exerting pressure on the Supreme Court. One of these is Amulya Nidhi of  Health Right Forum, who says,

Clinical trials of NCEs are being conducted without following proper protocol, and companies are taking advantage of poor people.

Because of the limitations in India’s healthcare system, the country is not a good place for Phase II and Phase III trials, says Chinu Srinivasan, of Gujarat-based  Low Cost Standard Therapeutics. He points out that if a person in a remote village participating in a clinical trial were to have a heart attack, he could not be flown to the closest hospital.

A recent move by the Supreme Court could possibly put the brakes on this runaway train. It has called on the Indian government to give more details regarding its approval process for clinical trials before they proceed. This ruling is the result of campaigning for stricter trial oversight by several organizations within the country. The fate of 162 global clinical trials will depend on the outcome of the ruling.

Without better controls, the Indian people are being treated as if their lives have no more value than that of laboratory rats. Nidhi and other activists say the ruling and resulting tighter regulations may cause Big Pharma financial losses. However, they feel those fiscal concerns are inconsequential compared to the safety of their people.

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About the author:

Mary West is a natural health enthusiast, as she believes this area can profoundly enhance wellness. She is the creator of a natural healing website where she focuses on solutions to health problems that work without side effects. You can visit her site and learn more at Ms. West is also the author of  Fight Cancer Through Powerful Natural Strategies.


This article was republished with permission from  Live in the Now, one of the fastest growing natural health newsletters. Visit  to browse their complete library of articles, or join the nearly 60,000 readers subscribed to  their Newsletter.


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