As explained in prior posts, in a lawsuit seeking all of the documents the FDA relied upon to license Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine, a federal judge shot down the FDA’s requested rate of 500 pages per month and instead ordered the FDA to produce at the rate of 55,000 pages per month starting on March 1.
Since the government has trillions of dollars of our money, it is putting it to good use by fighting to assure that the public has the least amount of transparency possible. To that end, it has now asked the Court to make the public wait until May for it to start producing 55,000 pages per month and, even then, claims it may not be able to meet this rate.
The FDA’s excuse? As explained in the brief opposing the FDA’s request, the FDA’s defense effectively amounts to claiming that the 11 document reviewers it has already assigned and the 17 additional reviewers being onboarded are only capable of reading at the speed of preschoolers.
As the FDA tries to obtain months of delay, guess who just showed upon in the lawsuit? Yep, Pfizer. And it is represented by a global chair and team from a law firm with thousands of lawyers. Pfizer’s legal bill will likely be multiple times what it would cost the FDA to simply hire a private document review company to review, redact, and produce the documents at issue. Within weeks, if not days.
Pfizer is coming in as a third party. But Pfizer assures the Court it is here to help expedite production of the documents. Sure it is! Where was Pfizer before the Court ordered the 55,000 pages per month? Right, doing what it normally does: letting the government work on its behalf – like the way the government mandates, promotes, and defends Pfizer’s product.
But the government did not please Pfizer this time and so here it comes, likely looking for a second bite at the apple. Of course the FDA consented to Pfizer appearing. You can read the response my firm filed to Pfizer’s motion , as well as all of the other relevant recent filings in the link provided below.