A new report has criticised the World Health Organisation (WHO) for declaring the 2009 outbreak of the H1N1 virus (swine flu) a pandemic without sufficient evidence.

The report, written by the Social, Health and Family Affairs Committee of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), implies that the WHO’s pandemic announcement was influenced by the pharmaceutical industry.

The global swine flu scare increased the revenues of pharmaceutical companies by creating a massive demand for vaccines, leading to more than $18bn of global spending.

British Medical Journal (BMJ) editor-in-chief of Dr Fiona Godlee brought additional information to PACE’s attention, stating that a BMJ team had concluded that WHO anti-swine flu drug guidelines had been prepared by scientists who had received payment from pharmaceutical companies Roche and GlaxoSmithKline.

WHO spokesman Gregory Hartl defended the organisation, noting that safeguards were in place to manage possible conflicts of interest when consulting the scientific community.

“As a public health agency operating on the precautionary principle, we had a duty of care to respond. This was a pandemic and is a pandemic,” Hartl added.

How well do you really know your competitors?

Access the most comprehensive Company Profiles on the market, powered by GlobalData. Save hours of research. Gain competitive edge.

Company Profile – free sample

Thank you!

Your download email will arrive shortly

Not ready to buy yet? Download a free sample

We are confident about the unique quality of our Company Profiles. However, we want you to make the most beneficial decision for your business, so we offer a free sample that you can download by submitting the below form

By GlobalData