Press Release by the Coalition against BAYER-dangers

BAYER group has contaminated blood preparations with AIDS

COALITION demands full compensation

The COALITION AGAINST BAYER-DANGERS, an international network of BAYER-critics, demands full compensation of haemophiliacs in Germany and all over the world on the basis of the concessions recently made in Japan. Whereas in Japan the haemophiliacs who became HIV-infected through contaminated coagulation preparations are to receive 450.000$ each as well as a pension of 1400$, the affected German haemophiliacs were put off with minor sums, if at all, already years ago. In return they had to sign a plaintiff‹s renunciation of the suit and a professional secrecy.

Due to a half-hearted intiative in 1995 the German Federal Government adjudicated a small pension of about 1000$ to the moribund.
The pharmaceutical combines make only completely insufficient contributions to this pension.

BAYER’s moral responsibility weighs heavily. The extent of the AIDS epidemic among haemophiliacs could have been reduced dramatically through precautionary measures, because BAYER had anticipated the disaster early but still did not act. This can be proved by an internal paper written by the president of the BAYER subsidiary CUTTER, dating from 1982. Nevertheless it was not until 1985 that virus- inactivation procedures were employed. A parliamentary study of the the German Parliament achieved the same findings, according to which a fatal alliance between industry and public authorities tolerated the contamination of haemophiliacs over years. The sick who suffer from a hereditary lack of coagulation factors were supplied with expensive, contaminated preparations by the pharmaceutical industry - under the overall control of the American BAYER subsidiary CUTTER.

In the USA as well BAYER had early knowledge about the deadly risks of ist preparations. As early as August 1983 CUTTER employees forsaw in confidential scenarios a world-wide “gigantic epidemic" among haemophiliacs and their relatives. Nevertheless, out of cost-saving reasons CUTTER refused to employ early a virus- inactivating procedure for its coagulation preparations. Even worse:
At that time CUTTER had also persuaded the whole branch not to use the already available Coretest - a blood test for tracking down infectious blood donators - which was highly recommended by the American Center for Disease Control.

At BAYER‹s Annual General Meetings speakers of the COALITION AGAINST BAYER-DANGERS have repeatedly referred to the delaying tactics concerning the Core-test as ,premeditatd murder of innocent patients", because the delaying tactics were used intentionally and for low motives.

The COALITION demands the punishment of the responsible persons at BAYER and the respective public authorities. Furthermore the COALITION demands the establishment of a generous fund by the blood-industry for compensating the affected haemophiliacs and their relatives. At this year’s BAYER General Meeting in Cologne on April 25th the COALITION will bring this subject up for discussion.

For the first time in the history of German public limited companies the COALITION was able to extend the agenda of a general meeting. The extension reads as follows: “The General Meeting expresses its distrust in the Managing Board because of its responsibility for the contamination of thousands of haemophiliacs with AIDS". The agenda was also extended with applications for getting out of genetic engineering and for compensating former slave workers of the IG Farben. Altogether a shock for BAYER’s Managing Board.