The U.S. COPD Coalition (USCC) has released a “Statement of Principles” pertaining to the recent acquisition by cigarette maker Phillip Morris International of Vectura Group plc, a British company that manufactures inhalers for pharmaceutical manufacturers. The statement of principles was approved by the USCC Board of Directors at their recent meeting.
“I think it’s common sense that organizations devoted to promoting safe and effective treatment of persons with pulmonary diseases are not in support of a tobacco company acquiring a manufacture of inhalers which are used in the delivery of medication’s proven effective in treating a variety of lung diseases and conditions”, stated USCC Chair Sam P. Giordano, MBA, RRT, FAARC in announcing the release of the statement. “I encourage all of you to undertake efforts to adopt similar statements within your organizations and advocacy groups and use it to educate your family, friends, and allies.”
The statement of principles outlines USCC’s concerns about tobacco companies entering the healthcare market, and commits to the following key principles:
I. We Will Not Do Business with Big Tobacco: USCC will not interact with individuals or
companies directly involved with the tobacco industry or its subsidiaries.
II. We Will Not Accept Tobacco Money or Partnerships: USCC will continue to refuse
financial support and partnerships from tobacco companies and their subsidiaries.
III. We Will Oppose Big Tobacco in Health Care: USCC will continue to oppose efforts by
Big Tobacco companies to enter the health care sector while still producing addictive tobacco/nicotine products.
IV. We Will Help Patients Find Treatments That Work Best for Them: Patients, in consultation with their healthcare provider, should choose drugs best suited to treat their health condition. As always, providers should recommend the treatment(s) best suited to treat the patient’s health condition. Patients who object to using products that include components manufactured by a tobacco company subsidiary should be guided to alternatives.
V. We Will Urge The Pharmaceutical Industry to Develop a Tobacco Company-Free
Supply Chain: Pharmaceutical companies that use components made by subsidiaries of
tobacco companies should work to expeditiously develop supply chains that do not include
those Big Tobacco-produced components.
VI. We Will Increase Awareness: USCC will educate, advocate, and create awareness about
Big Tobacco’s efforts to enter the health care sector, and which health companies are
owned by, being considered for purchase by, or use products that are produced by subsidiaries of, tobacco companies.
VII. We Will Put Patients First: And above all else, USCC will ensure that everything we do
reflects our mutual goal of putting patients first.
Read the full Statement of Principles here: