Bloomberg Businessweek reports, "Teva to Block Drug for U.S. Execution Use as Hospira Pressured." It's written by Makiko Kitamura.
Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (TEVA) said it plans to control distribution of the anesthetic propofol to prevent the drug from being used in executions of U.S. prisoners.
The world’s largest maker of generic drugs has said it plans to restart production of the medicine, which is lethal in large doses and contributed to the death of singer Michael Jackson. A shortage of other execution drugs prompted Missouri’s department of corrections to say in May it will use propofol in any upcoming lethal injections.
While it plans to supply propofol to hospitals and health- care providers, Teva will establish procedures to prevent the drug from being sold to correctional facilities, spokeswoman Denise Bradley said. Petach Tikva, Israel-based Teva joins other drugmakers, including Denmark’s H. Lundbeck A/S (LUN) and Fresenius Kabi, a U.S. unit of Germany’s Fresenius SE (FRE), which have taken similar steps.
“Teva has shown that -- like any responsible pharmaceutical company -- it wishes to be in the business of saving lives, not ending them in executions,” said Maya Foa, head of the Stop the Lethal Injection Project at Reprieve, a London-based human rights group.
"Teva Will Try To Prevent Sedative From Being Used in U.S. Executions," by Peter Loftus is from Dow Jones Newswires, via Capital.gr.
Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (TEVA) said it will try to keep the sedative propofol out of the hands of U.S. executioners when it relaunches the product.
"In accordance with the request made by our manufacturer, Teva is limiting the sale and distribution of this product to customers who agree to use best efforts not to sell or distribute to correctional facilities," said Teva spokeswoman Denise Bradley.
Corden Pharma manufactures propofol at a plant in Italy on behalf of Teva, according to the product prescribing label. A Corden spokesman couldn't immediately be reached.
Propofol is approved for sedation or anesthesia during medical procedures or surgeries. The drug gained notoriety for its role in the overdose death of pop star Michael Jackson in 2009.
Last year, Missouri adopted the use of propofol to carry out executions, but the state's Supreme Court subsequently ruled it was premature to carry out executions under the new procedure while death-row inmates challenge it.
In August 2012, another supplier of propofol, Fresenius Kabi, said it wouldn't accept orders for the sedative from any U.S. departments of corrections, and would tighten its distribution controls to try to prevent the drug from being used in executions.
The UK site Ekklesia posts, "Top pharmaceutical company moves to stop flow of execution drugs."
One of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies has taken steps to ensure its drugs cannot be used to carry out executions by lethal injection.
UK company Teva, which describes itself as a “top 10 global pharmaceutical company [with] $20.3bn in sales in 2012,” will put in place distribution controls to ensure its products cannot be used to kill prisoners on America’s death rows.
Teva is recommencing production of an anaesthetic called propofol, which in large enough doses can be used to kill. As supplies of other execution drugs run out, US prisons are starting to turn to propofol to carry out capital punishment.
The move brings the firm, which has its headquarters in Israel, into line with other pharmaceutical companies including Lundbeck and Fresenius Kabi, who have taken effective steps to block the use of their products for executions.
Teva has stated that they too will establish procedures "to help prevent propofol from being sold to correctional institutions for use in executions and sell only to acute care hospitals, clinics and healthcare facilities where the product's use is medically necessary."
Earlier coverage of European actions to stop drugs from being used in executions begins at the link.