PETER ROST: PHARMA MARKETING EXPERT WITNESS. AWP, MEDICAL DEVICE EXPERT.: AstraZeneca ethics report claims that Zubillaga's interim replacement threatened to fire whistleblowers . . .

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AstraZeneca ethics report claims that Zubillaga's interim replacement threatened to fire whistleblowers . . .

I have just received access to the report number and pass code for a recent report on AstraZeneca's ethics violation web site, (Click on images to enlarge.)

Report Submission Date

Reported Company/Branch Information
Name: USA
Location: Mid-Atlantic Oncology Regional Meeting
City/State/Zip: Baltimore, MD, USA

Violation Information
Violation Type

What is your relationship to AstraZeneca?

Please identify the person(s) engaged in this behavior:
[Name redacted] - Northeast Oncology Regional Sales Director

Do you suspect or know that a supervisor or management is involved?

If yes, then who?
[Name redacted] - Northeast Oncology Regional Sales Director

Is management aware of this problem?
Do Not Know / Do Not Wish To Disclose

What is the general nature of this matter?
Threats of retaliation against whistleblowers.

Where did this incident or violation occur?
Baltimore, MD

Please provide the specific or approximate time this incident occurred:
June 13th, 2007

How long do you think this problem has been going on?
1 to 3 months

How did you become aware of this violation?
I observed it

June 13th 2007

This took place today at a regional meeting in Baltimore MD. Present were oncology pharmaceutical reps and their district managers from the Mid-Atlantic oncology region.

[Name redacted] is the Northeast Regional Sales Director for oncology. He also served as the interim Mid-Atlantic Regional Sales Director after Zubillaga was fired.

At this meeting [Name redacted] expressed the opinion that the whistleblowers who recently reported violations by AstraZeneca to the media and OIG should be tracked-down and fired, even after someone present pointed out that if AZ had actually responded to its own internal hotline, the whistleblowers would not have been forced to go public. He was the senior manager present.

According to AstraZeneca's Corporate Integrity Agreement with OIG "Consistent with the open compliance environment that AstraZeneca strives to maintain, company policy prohibits retaliation or retribution of any kind following the good faith reporting of a suspected violation."

Follow-Up Questions/Comments
The company has submitted a comment or a question for you to answer.
6/19/2007 8:48 AM - AstraZeneca takes allegations of wrongdoing very seriously. This matter has been sent for further investigation. AstraZeneca will investigate this matter promptly, thoroughly and diligently and will takes appropriate steps based on the outcome of the investigation.

Follow-Up Notes
Jun 27, 2007, 9:56 AM
[Name redacted] had each of us vow that anything said at this meeting would stay secret.

FYI - The premise of this meeting was to 'move forward', after numerous recent scandals, by forming a committee of representatives to make suggestions to management.

Follow-Up Questions/Comments
There are no questions asked or comments posted by the company.

Chat Transcripts
There are no chat transcripts for this incident.

Read AstraZeneca's official policy on retaliation, click on image below!

My new source inside AstraZeneca, "Susan Jones," wrote the following when she sent the report code and password to me:

"Dr. Rost, the premise of our meeting was to form a group of AZ oncology representatives to 'move forward' after the recent scandals in the region. We all agreed to keep what was said at the meeting to ourselves. However, in good conscience, I could not ignore a direct threat to fire whistleblowers by AZ management. What if I was one of the original whistleblowers? [Name Redacted] would have fired me. I picked up your book after the 'bucket of money' scandal and was inspired enough to override my fear and contact you. "



Blogger Pharma Spy said...

Wow...AZ just couldn't resist trying to get even could they.....

Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's disgusting that any company would take actions against any employee who was trying to "do the right thing".

Unfortunately, we live in a me first world and it's F_ over the other guy/girl at all costs.

Don't worry this person will get their "just due" some other time or some other place. Bank on that!


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