The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has a track record of trying to hide its communications with representatives of pharmaceutical companies. ICAN has sued the agency in the past for this very conduct. Apparently, CDC has not learned its lesson because it is now trying to hide emails between Dr. Amanda Cohn, the former Executive Secretary of CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, and pharmaceutical companies.
Even more troubling is that the CDC asserts it must hide these communications with pharmaceutical companies from the public because they involve the “process by which government decisions and policies are formulated.” What?! CDC is supposed to be a watchdog over pharmaceutical companies, not set policy with them!
Here are the details: On February 2, 2021, ICAN, through its attorneys, submitted a Freedom of Information Act request for communications between Dr. Cohn and GlaxoSmithKline, Sanofi, Merck or Pfizer. The CDC located 1,999 pages of responsive records, many of which it redacted or withheld to protect “the decision-making process of government agencies.” The CDC, the primary federal health agency responsible for vaccine safety, is supposed to be regulating vaccine manufactures, not making secret policy decisions with them!
ICAN has formally challenged the agency’s inappropriate redactions and will continue to demand transparency and accountability from the CDC.