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Videx : BMS isn’t convincing, but continues to disregard the people living with HIV/AIDS

publié en ligne : 29 June 2010

Wednesday 23 june, Act Up-Paris activists demonstrated in front of the head office of Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS) in France to denounce their factories’ delocalisation leading to the stock shortage of treatment for over 7 000 children in the southern countries

Following this action, BMS reitterated on their webste[2] that their « engagement » would « never be denied » in « helping the patients that need it to recieved their treatment ». BMS is trying to make us believe, through evasive communications, that they did all they could to put into place an adapted restructuration plan. In truth :

BMS could not care less about the consequences of a belated inspection query from the AfSSaPS.

Indeed, the Videx® homologation, and therefore the access to it, that will now be produced in the USA by BMS depends of the factory’s inspection by the French Agence sécurité sanitaire des produits de santé (AFSSaPS). And it is up to the laboratory to lodge a file allowing production site’s inspection in the best time limits to avoid all stock shortage risks.

BMS annouced their factory’s restructuration plan in 2008 and « immediately mobilized » its « teams internally » and its « external partners in order to avoid all supply shortage ». A completely useless mobilisation since it was only on the 8 june 2010 that the lab finally got round to filing this case at the l’AFSSaPS, therefore putting in danger the access to treatment for 7 000 children.

BMS declares having an « engagement that has never been denied »

- Certainly not towards the patients regarding the pediatric treatments, whether it be Videx® today or concerning the cease in production of pediatric Sustiva® in 2008.
- Not towards UNITAID, main licensor of pediatric treatments in developing countries. Indeed, if the lab takes « very seriously UNITAID’s concern » it has still not bothered replying to them.
- Not towards the 160 employees of its factory in Meymac, fired by BMS and now left in ignorance. Nor of the others concerned by the global restructuration plan lead by BMS and involving 4 000 redundancies to come.

Considering all this, what has never been denied of BMS is not its engagement, it remains its disrespect towards the people suffering from AIDS.

It is important to remind Mr Gallet, vice president of communication, that to engage with Act Up-Paris militants, in the middle of a die-in to symbolise the deaths from AIDS and say to them "So, are you feeling a bit faint?" is just the proof of his total disrespect and contempt toward the people living with HIV/AIDS

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