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Elizabeth Warren calls on Albert Bourla to reveal detail of appointment of former FDA commissioner Scott Gottlieb to Pfizer's board

Published on 25/07/19 at 10:15am

Elizabeth Warren has called on Pfizer to reveal the details of Scott Gottlieb’s appointment to the company’s Board of Directors.

In a letter to Pfizer’s CEO Albert Bourla, Massachusetts Senator and Democratic Presidential Candidate, Elizabeth Warren, asked for “additional information regarding the announcement last month that Dr Scott Gottlieb, just weeks after leaving his job as Commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), would be joining the Board of Directors of Pfizer.” The request comes after Warren called on Gottlieb to resign from the board of Pfizer earlier in July.

In both her letter to Gottlieb and her letter to Bourla, Warren criticised the revolving door through which high level bureaucrats enter the corporate world. Notably, every former FDA commissioners in the past 38 years, apart from David Kessler who went into academia, has joined the board of a pharmaceutical firm.        

Nevertheless, in her letter to Bourla, Warren said she was “disappointed that Dr Gottlieb appears to be unwilling to reconsider his decision to join the Pfizer board,” as she raised concerns as to whether “Pfizer is purchasing access to high-level Trump Administration officials.”

She thus called on Pfizer to put forward information on the hiring of Gottlieb. In a list of requests, Warren asked Pfizer reveal the details as to: when discussions between Pfizer and Gottlieb began; whether Pfizer had considered ethics of Gottlieb’s appointment to their board; the total pay packet Gottlieb will receive in return for his role; and the responsibilities he will hold in his new role.

In doing this, Warren has called on Pfizer to hand over emails, notes and memoranda concerning Gottlieb’s appointment to their board.

Louis Goss

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