Tuesday, November 03, 2009

GMC Hearings of Professor Richard Eastell - Day 1

I have just attended the first day of the General Medical Council "hearings" involving Professor Richard Eastell.

These have been truly fascinating, and will surely provide fodder for much discussion about publication ethics and scientific accountibility.

A quick note ...... rushing off to watch the rest of the evolving farce.

These are the key background documents and issue the GMC should be discussing
here. None of these are apparently to be seen in the case. They are all documents Professor Eastell will have.

There have been some real howlers. Unfortunately the GMC have (deliberately?) constructed a case that has ensured that the panel members are disabled from knowing or seeing the most relevant and damning evidence. The panel have been disabled from knowing that at the very time Professor Eastell knowingly allowed false declarations to appear in publication submissions (this is acknowledged both to be knowing and to be false), he was being actively denied access to the data (randomisation codes and fracture codes) underlying these studies by the sponsor.

Unfortunately Eastell's defense team appear to understand nothing of science, scientific thinking or scientific ethics. As a result they have fed nonsense to their client thinking it would help him, but have instead dropped him into a huge scientific hole.

For example they managed to get Eastell to state that fundamental misrepresentations of science, fundamentally faked graphs, a key result that was completely wrong (in three manuscripts) are mere "quibbles". Really?

They then got Eastell to try to say that being shown graphs of data or "working very closely" with those producing those "outputs" somehow constitutes access to raw data. They then managed to get Eastell and Rosemary Hannon to say that he, as a scientist and Research Dean, and her as a scientist really wouldn't know what to do with data anyway if he they had it (so perhaps they should retract all of those many noncommercial publications then?).

There is some more background here.

Much more later..

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insider said...

Wishing you all the very best Aubrey.

Anonymous said...

I was on this drug for Avascular Necrosis caused by chemotherapy for quite some time, and was in serious pain from the AVN, and developed a dependence on Methadone that I was taking to manage the pain. Had the actual data been available, I suspect I'dve been given a different med. Thanks for the miserable two years, proctor and gamble.

ps: Yes it would've sucked either way, clearly.