In 1981, the world was exposed to one of the worst pandemics in recorded history. This was the beginning of the dreaded virus called HIV (Human immunodeficiency virus) or worse still, Acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS).
This killer virus, according to the world health organization (WHO), has claimed the lives of over 32 million people worldwide over time. Which was why when the development of a new medicine that was proclaimed to allow people with HIV to live longer and less painful lives……
It was embraced and celebrated by all because it was an answered prayer. Finally, people living with AIDS needn’t die of this horrible epidemic.
But little did people know that this so-called miracle drug did more harm than good. What’s that popular expression?—“A wolf in sheep’s clothing!” It is no other drug than the popular Truvada which is majorly a composition of tenofovir disoproxil and emtricitabine.
This drug ended up causing more harm than good, which invariably has led to onder law firm and many more law firms that helps unsuspecting victims that have suffered immense mishap as a result of making use of such drugs to get some form of retribution.
These HIV drugs were sold under different names like Complera, Truvada, Atripla, Stribild, and Viread. One of the major underlying components, Tenovfovir, like we stated earlier, was actually manufactured, distributed, and sold by one of the financially powerful giants within the health sector.
In fact, there has been some lawsuit against this company over the years, because they were allegedly accused of knowing the side effects of the drugs and still kept it in circulation because of their financial gain.
But before we go into details, and begin to unravel the behind the scenes of what brought about this lawsuit, let’s take a look at some brief history—and then maybe I can wrap your head around understanding how HIV victims have been victimized—if you will be willing to follow me till the end
Gilead Sciences, Inc. is a big pharmaceutical company based in California. They acquired the rights to a unique drug in the mid-1990s called Tenofovir. Not only that, but they also went ahead to secure the exclusive license to synthesize any Tenofovir based compound.
Gilead started the manufacturing and sales of a prodrug form of Tenofovir called TDF which they knew was very toxic to the kidneys and bones in the human body in early 2001.
Perhaps the most shocking and utterly unspeakable thing that was alleged they did, was the fact that, they developed another drug called TAF which they knew was less harmful, much safer and more effective in treating HIV, but decided to keep it from the general public in order to maximize the profit from the already monopolized TDF patency.
Following a recent five-count lawsuit
Strict product Liability
Breach of express warranties
Breach of implied warranties
Fraud and concealment}
that was filed recently by some patients that have suffered humongous deterioration to their kidneys, bones, and teeth in April 2019 in the county of San Francisco, California against Gilead Inc.
It is evident that this is not just a story being made up. It is real, and real people have been affected, and even in some cases, death as a result of alleged corporate greed.
The plaintiffs argued that after Gilead sciences secured the license to the drug “tenofovir” and the exclusive rights to produce, synthesize and create Tenofovir based compounds, beginning in 2001, they manufactured and sold prodrug forms of Tenofovir called TDF.
Within that same time, they had developed another prodrug, which was another form of Tenofovir that was called Tenofovir Alafenamide Fumarate (TAF), which the company knew was less toxic to the kidney and bones.
Furthermore, data submitted by the company in a patent application before TDF was even approved, exposed the fact that Gilead knew TAF was substantially less toxic than TAF, yet Gilead decided to shelf the TAF project in 2004.
It was alleged that this was done to maximize returns on the existing TDF patent. Gilead entered the marketplace to the exclusion of all others, leaving patients with no option in an already desperate situation.
And under these circumstances, the plaintiffs allege that Gilead held-out on the safest possible drug. But ten years later in 2014 as the TDF patent came to a close, that was when Gilead strategically applied for FDA approval of TAF. And in November 2015, it brought it to the market for the very first time.
So when Gilead introduced TAF to doctors in 2015, it peached TAF as a new and novel prodrug formulation that was much safer for patients, but of course, there was nothing new about it.
It was basically the same drug that was kept hidden from the general public since at least 2000. And as a result, it’s alleged that hundreds of thousands of HIV infected patients, including people who took or administered the drug as a preventive measure—in order words—healthy people who took the drugs to mitigate contacting the virus but ended up causing more harm than good to themselves as a result of the use of TDF.
These plaintiffs and many more have suffered both physical and psychological deterioration over time, starting from the earliest appearance of this deadly virus.
The AIDS community has been through hell—they have been marginalized, neglected, stigmatized and discriminated against, ever since the disease first made its appearance in the public lexicon in 1981.
Back then, it was mockingly called the gay-related immune deficiency, gay-mans pneumonia, and gay cancer.
Still on the social humiliation suffered by HIV victims. Even though in 1982 that the center for disease and control had estimated that tens of thousands of people were already affected by the disease—and anywhere from 854 to 2304 deaths in the year 1982 to1983, had been associated to AIDS.
The initial efforts to allocate and source funding for AIDS research were ridiculed by the highest levels of government. So much so, that the then press secretary of the White House under President Ronald Reagan’s administration (Larry Melvin Speakes) went as far as calling the epidemic the gay plague.
You might be wondering why the history lesson? Well, the essence and message is for people to realize first that people with aids are real and so is there suffering and secondly (most importantly), that if there is anyone out there going through the same predicament, they should bear in mind that;
- They are not alone
- They can always take action by employing the services of special law firms that litigate specifically for people that have been exploited for one reason or the other.
In conclusion, It is our civic responsibility to help others that are going through one form of terminal disease or another, for they need all the love, care, and compassion they can get—-just my tiny winy bit.