Conflict, misconduct alleged in fast-tracked federal effort
A nearly $21 million government-funded study to see if a popular, over-the-counter heartburn medication could be a covid-19 remedy has fizzled amid allegations of conflicts of interest and scientific misconduct, according to interviews, a whistleblower complaint and internal government records obtained by The Associated Press.
At a time when the world is desperate for a cure, misinformation swirls and economies struggle, the behaviour described by this story is diabolical.
Now, the Pepcid project faces an uncertain future. Northwell Health, the New York health care provider hired to conduct the testing at its hospitals, put the trial on hold due to a shortage of hospitalized covid-19 patients in that state. Northwell is partnered with Alchem Laboratories, the Florida-based pharmaceutical company that received the contract.