Questions in Parliament, and a briefing note on missing trials: updated.

October 23rd, 2012 by Ben Goldacre in big pharma, hiding data, publication bias | 4 Comments »

This morning at 11:30, Dr Sarah Wollaston MP will ask questions in parliament about the ongoing scandal of missing trial data. This is widely recognised as a problem by academics and doctors, but governments, regulators, and journalists have neglected the problem, while industry simply denies it. Watch the questions live here or watch it later here.

As an example, we spent £500m stockpiling Tamiflu in the UK, but the company Roche are still withholding vitally important information about the trials on whether it works from Cochrane, the international academic collaboration who make gold standard reviews of evidence for doctors, patients, and governments.

Apparently this morning the Department of Health issued a statement to the Today Programme stating that all data from all trials on all drugs is already available by law. This is not true: but there may have been a communication problem, I am hoping to obtain a copy of this statement, and if you have one, please send it to

Here are two articles from the Times today, on this issue. The first is a comment piece (by me). The second is a news piece about the growing number of doctors and academics speaking out on this issue, including editors of major journals, founders and directors of Cochrane, senior medics and academics, etc.  Read the rest of this entry »

Great article in Trials, on why regulators should stop withholding trial info from doctors and patients

October 18th, 2012 by Ben Goldacre in bad science, big pharma | 5 Comments »

One thing in Bad Pharma has shocked readers more than anything else: the way that vitally important information about trials is withheld from doctors and patients, not just by drug companies, but also by government bodies such NICE and the European Medicines Agency (the body that approves and regulates medicines for the UK).

Read the rest of this entry »

I did this talk at TEDglobal last year. It’s quite… fast.

October 13th, 2012 by Ben Goldacre in onanism | 1 Comment »

I did this talk at TEDglobal last year. It’s just hit a million views, and I realised I’ve never posted it online here. Hope you like it!

GSK have promised to share all trial data: should we trust them?

October 11th, 2012 by Ben Goldacre in big pharma | 1 Comment »

Briefly: today, several people have asked for my response to this story in the Guardian, celebrating GSK’s promise for more transparency on their trial data. Read the rest of this entry »

The ABPI claims that all the problems in my book are “historical”. This claim is simply untrue.

October 11th, 2012 by Ben Goldacre in big pharma | 21 Comments »

My book Bad Pharma documents serious ongoing problems in the pharmaceutical industry. In particular, I show how vitally important information from clinical trials is still being withheld from doctors and patients, right now, today; and that patients experience avoidable suffering and death as a consequence. There is no nicer way to express that reality, and this ongoing problem of missing data is meticulously documented in the book, because it is widely discussed in the medical literature.

I am very sorry to say that the ABPI, the UK pharmaceutical industry PR group, has now responded, and their only response has been to flatly deny what is plainly and provably true. Here is their press release, Read the rest of this entry »