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Poverty and Illiteracy: Reasons Why India Is Conned Into Clinical Trials

By SiliconIndia   |   Monday, 08 July 2013, 12:52 Hrs   |    8 Comments
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Bangalore: Today, India is one of the most popular destinations for clinical trials on human being as the country is filled with poverty stricken and illiterate masses. Most of them voluntarily register themselves unwittingly for a trial in untested drugs without having adequate knowledge of the drugs and its after effect, reported the AFP.

The poor and illiterate are the most targeted ones by the pharmaceutical companies as the trials can be carried out with less expenditure. If not, it would cost them hugely just for the trials.

Niranjan Lal Pathak- a factory watchman is one such victim who was unaware of the fact initially and felt lucky that he was offered a free heart treatment by a doctor in Madhya Pradesh.

One of Pathak’s family members said that the doctors told them that Pathak was being treated for a special project for free of cost and were given a condition that the family members should only approach the doctor for medicine and not the local chemists if they ran out of it. But later on, they found out that he was used as a guinea pig for untested clinical trials, as reported by AFP.

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Reader's comments(8)
1: We Indians always depend upon other countries for innovations in medical field. We are really far behind in our contributions. we adapt things from west and use it even without thinking the difference these drugs having in our population.each and every drug we use is tested outside and also many companies are reluctant to bring their new molecules to India. asa result our patients dont get new treatment and then we blame that we dont get good treatment in our country.
Propagate that developing new drugs and testing them is the need of the hour and everyone must have a positive attitude towards innovations.
Without clinical research we are not going to get any new drugs in the treatment of all deadly diseases and remember we have large no of cancer, heart and diabetic patients.
Posted by:limmy - 05 Aug, 2013
2: Why look at what poverty forces anyone to do? Poverty is easily removed if people stop having children they cannot care for. It is cruel to let people breed babies on dirty pavements or to encourage those with AIDS, mental/physical illness, etc. to have babies.
Posted by:bharati - 09 Jul, 2013
3: this article is misleading, all the medicine we take today were tested in the west. can the author name a single drug that we made available to the world? if you dont want clinical trials, please stop taking medicines (that includes crocin) that were tested in the west many many years ago. Clinical trials are the safest way way to cost effective drugs. - Ignorant people who know little to nothing about healthcare write such crap.
Posted by:Kiran majumdar - 09 Jul, 2013
4: advantage of democracy
Posted by:yssubramanyam - 08 Jul, 2013
5: Doctor who are considered as the second God are also after the life of the impoverished sections.
Posted by:jenme - 08 Jul, 2013
Mr Majumdar,

You are right that all medicines are clinically tested. But like the codes of conduct of a taxi driving, those who are conducting trials cannot be cheaters, is't it? Fudging the patient selected - not revealing whether they are tested; that the record will be used for research; that there is a risk of side and adverse effects (afterall even they are being tested) and by law they are eligible for compensation about the adverse effects. Lack of transparency, conflict of interests are the main causes. Later, the research data is fudged. Earlier, the medicines were clinically tested but banned when safer medicines were discovered.We want healers and scientists doing these tests, not cheaters and traders.
Dhruv Replied to: jenme - 09 Jul, 2013
Seriously? All clinical trials are registered at ctri so what is the big hullaboo about??? and with regards to illegal trials- can you name one such case and the molecule??
sarita Replied to: Dhruv - 01 Aug, 2013
clinical research is a scientific way to confirm the efficacy and safety of a molecule, Not a single medicine used in india is without prior evidence, Today if we are consuming crocin, benadryl,and various life saving drugs it is due to the benefits of clinioal reseach
srikanth Replied to: Dhruv - 09 Jul, 2013