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PFIZER 'CRIMINAL'

Published: Tuesday, 02 February 2016
Written by James Veloso
PFIZER 'CRIMINAL'

Global pharmaceutical giant Pfizer often prides itself in ensuring that “people everywhere have access to innovative treatments and quality health care,” as the company’s website boasts.

But is Pfizer the generous company that they always projected to be?

The answer to that would be a big NO.

In the Philippines, what Pfizer has been doing—keeping prices of medicine out of reach of our poorest citizens—is tantamount to a “crime.”

Deprivation of medicines is a crime, plain and simple. And the effects of high prices of medicine – the way Pfizer has been playing the game – is criminal.

Nowhere can Pfizer’s “crimes” against the poor be more glaring than in the Philippines, where prices of medicine have often been touted as one of the highest in Southeast Asia (at least until the passage of Republic Act No. 9502, also known as the Cheaper Medicines Act).

For example, in 2008…

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AIR POLLUTION KILLER

Published: Tuesday, 26 January 2016
Written by OpinYon
AIR POLLUTION KILLER

Photo courtesy of Gigie Cruz/Wordpress.com

By Rosemarie Señora

Everyone wants clean air!

Metro Manilans, in particular, have since been longing for it.

There’s a bit of good news, as in the succeeding months, the quality of air pollution in Metro Manila is expected to improve.

Government through the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) will start enforcing the Clean Air Act of 1999 (or Republic Act No. 8749) that requires oil companies to sell cleaner fuel products and imposing use of Euro4 fuel on all motor vehicles.

“Around 80 percent of air pollution in the country comes from mobile sources. With oil retailers required to sell only Euro 4 fuels, vehicles would now have cleaner emissions and thus, we can expect cleaner air,” Environment Secretary Ramon J.P Paje said.

Seventy to 80% of air pollution in Metro Manila is contributed by motor vehicles, while the remaining 20% to…

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PHARMA LOBBY

Published: Thursday, 21 January 2016
Written by James Veloso
PHARMA LOBBY

Photo courtesy of Walweed Alzuhair/Flickr.com

Pro-reproductive health (RH) advocates are now up in arms. The Senate Committee on Finance, led by Senator Loren Legarda, has recently slashed a billion pesos from this year's national budget intended for the implementation of the country's Reproductive Health Act of 2012.

Staunch advocates of RH have loudly protested the Senate committee's decision—which removed 86% of the total RH appropriations for this year — claiming that it would deny the country's marginalized sector access to contraceptives and other RH services.

"It's an ordinate bad impact. Because the law provides that the state is mandated to give universal access to family planning and product services ... ang tinamaan dito ang marginalized sector," Congressman Edcel Lagman, a staunch RH advocate, told media on January 12.

He may have meant well, but his comments are way off track, because it's not the marginalized sector that will take a beating…

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