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Hepatitis C – What Is Veterans Affairs Hiding For Profiteer Of Hep C Cure?

hepatitis c cure

hepatitis c cure

After CBS reported that Ray Schinazi made $400 million profit on a Hepatitis C cure, as a VA employee, the agency started playing a game of hide-the-pea.

The short version of Schinazi’s research were his discoveries of an HIV therapeutic and Hepatitis C cure. He developed those drugs while a full-time VA employee under his company named Pharmasset. Schinazi then sold Pharmasset to Gilead for $11 billion.

The deal netted Schinazi a cool $400 million profit all while collecting full pay and benefits from VA as a researcher.

So where did he find the time to run his private pharmaceutical research firm while also working at VA? The researcher claims he only worked at VA 7/8 time, whatever that means.

You may be wondering, but wasn’t he conducting the research on veterans at VA? How is it that Schinazi did not lose ownership rights given he was paid for the research by VA?

Great questions.

After the sale, Gilead’s investment bankers decided the cost of the Hepatitis C cure, called Sovaldi, should be more than double what Pharmasset estimated. It then began marketing the drugs for over $1,000 per pill to the public, but sold pills to VA at a 50% veterans discount, supposedly.

Sound like a good deal?

CBS – RAY SCHINAZI

CBS did not think so, either, and sought to expose the conflict.

RELATED: CBS Story On Raymond Schinazi

Shortly after CBS ran its news story, VA awarded Schinazi the prestigious Middleton Award. More questions surfaced about the doctor, his conflict of interest, and the enormous price tag taxpayers would have to pay to cure veterans infected with Hepatitis C. Schinazi quietly retired from VA after that point.

RELATED: VA Profiteer Sold Hepatitis C Cure For Billions

HEPATITIS C CURE FOIA

I submitted a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for records related to Schinazi’s Middleton Award. After waiting 8 months, VA provided most of the documents but heavily redacted the panel review data and names.

The FOIA officer believed the panel of reviews should be secret as well as some of the agencies and companies of individuals affiliated with the award that year. So what exactly is VA hiding behind those redactions?

I filed an appeal yesterday, so let’s hope we get to the bottom of it quickly.

The unredacted records revealed Schinazi’s application was recommended by Ronald Przygodzki, MD, acting director of VA research. It was approved by Timothy O’Leary, MD.

MIDDLETON AWARD JUSTIFICATION

Here is the justification for the award:

The William S. Middleton Award was established to annually recognize an investigator who has added significantly to the understanding and improvement of health care services for America’s Veterans; has inspired new VA investigators through excellence in training and mentorship; and has enhanced the national visibility and reputation of VA research. A review group consisting of VA researchers and clinicians unanimously selected Raymond F. Schinazi to receive the 2015 Middleton Award for Outstanding Achievement in biomedical research. The Director of the Biomedical Laboratory Research and Development Service and the Chief Research and Development Officer have accepted this nomination.

Dr. Schinazi is recognized for his pioneering work in the development of novel antiviral drugs that now form the backbone of combination regimens used in the treatment of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. The efficacy and safety of these medications have had a profound and transformative impact on the course of the acquired immune deficiency (AIDS) epidemic, changing HIV infection from a death sentence into a manageable chronic illness. Additionally, Dr. Schinazi’s expertise in virology and medicinal chemistry has led to the development of a curative treatment for hepatitis virus (HCV) infected patients now in widespread use. His antiviral drugs have not only benefited the VA patient population immensely but have saved millions of lives worldwide.

Dr Schinazi has served in a number of leadership roles including Director of the Scientific Working Group on Viral Eradication for the NIH-sponsored Emory University Center for AIDS Research, advisory board member for the Presidential Commission for AIDS during the Clinton administration, trustee for the Foundation for AIDS Research and board member of the Global Virus Network. Dr. Schinazi has been an invited speaker, session chair, founder and organizer of numerous national and international meetings. He has received many prestigious awards including a Distinguished Scientific Achievement Award from the American Liver Foundation (2014), the Research and Hope Award for Excellence in Academic Research from the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America Foundation (2014), the Distinguished Medical Science Award from the Friend of the National Library of Medicine (2013), induction into the Georgia Technology Hall of Fame (2012), the Charles C. Shepard Award from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2009), the Distinguished Scientist Award from the Hepatitis Foundation (2006) and a Senior Research Career Scientist Award from VA (1994- present).

Dr. Schinazi brings honor to the William S. Middleton Award. He is an exemplary scientist whose career and scientific contributions embody both the letter and the spirit of the award. His work is of tremendous scientific impact in areas that are relevant to Veterans’ health care. Recognition of his accomplishments would confirm VHA’s commitment to excellence in research and the treatment of diseases affecting Veterans and patients worldwide. The Middleton Award Committee, the Biomedical Laboratory Research and Development Service, and the Office of Research and Development are pleased to recommend Dr. Schinazi for the 2015 Middleton Award.

DOUBLE DIPPING

I am not above someone making good money for saving lives. I am against double dipping on the American taxpayer, especially when taxes funded the research Schinazi performed.

I cannot help but wonder if VA actually has a legal right to the cure for Hepatitis C, which would certainly save taxpayers billions while also saving lives of veterans affected.

What do you think about this? Rumor has it VA is now handing out treatment options like hot cakes, which was not the case just a couple months ago. Think they struck a deal with Gilead, the new owner of the cure?

[documentcloud url=”https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/3009507-IAD-Letter-16-01879-F.html”]

[documentcloud url=”https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/3009505-Award-Evaluation-Responsive-Records-16-01879-F.html”]

[documentcloud url=”https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/3009506-Email-Responsive-Records-16-01879-F-Redacted.html”]

[documentcloud url=”https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/3009509-VAIQ-Responsive-Records-16-01879-F-Redacted.html”]

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39 thoughts on “Hepatitis C – What Is Veterans Affairs Hiding For Profiteer Of Hep C Cure?”

  1. How many vets did he experiment on while developing his cure. His patients should sue him. Will The VA at least get the drug?

  2. Breaking News on Channel 9, WFTV, Orlando, Florida.
    (I’m paraphrasing)

    George Soros is getting involved in local politics here in Central Florida. So far he’s dumped lots of money concerning who’s running against Jeff Aston!
    Y’all remember Ashton. He’s the prosecutor who LOST the Casey Anthony Case!
    I guess Soros is going to start getting his dirty money involved in local stuff.
    Keep your ear open for more!

    1. P.S.
      George Soros = “Nazi Collaborator!”

      I’ve always wondered why that Jewish organization, which went/goes after Nazi War Criminals, never went after Soros!?

  3. Ben, I think you can open a massive can of worms of you want to pursue this.
    Go to VAs Research web site where they have all their handbooks, policies or directives on VA Research.
    The two publications you would find interesting are 1200.18 on Intellectual Property and 1200.20, Program Guide: Research Career Scientist…which conveniently has been updated as of August 1, 2016.
    The guide on Intellectual Property is still in effect and has been since 2002.
    In reading that guide, you have to ask what VA did regarding Shinazi on following Executive Order 10096 and Title 38 CFR Part 501. Did VA assert any right under those? Or did Shinazi find enough wiggle room in that to avoid sharing royalties?
    Did Shinazi follow that guide regarding invention disclosure? That would make an interesting FOIA. If that process was followed, who determined what the outcomes were according to that guide?
    What determination was made by the Office of General Counsel?
    Given the federal royalty cap is $150000 per employee per year, one can see the incentive for Shinazi to wiggle if $400 million is on the line. Atlanta VA gets screwed as well since 85% of any royalty is supposed to go back to the facility for ongoing research.

    Finally, what part this complies with that guide whose purpose is to transfer new scientific discoveries to benefit the public good as stated at the top of that guide?

  4. A few comments on this. How many redacted names might be shown to have a financial interest in Gilead? How many obtained financial interests after hearing about a possible sale to Gilead?

    How is it benefiting veterans when the medicine is restricted or not even provided due to its costs?

    If Shinazi developed this working only part time, imagine what he could do working full time.

    Is he not ripping off or gouging HIV patients because there would be a massive outcry?

    How does he differ from Martin Shkreli whose company bought various drugs and hacked the price way up solely for profit?

    Not only are taxpayers ripped off by Shinazi developing this on government time, but taxpayers get ripped off again when forced to pay inflated drug costs for a disease incurred in service to the nation.

    As for the claim of honoring William S. Middleton, the writer of that BS must not know the history of Middleton. It’s found in wikipedia. He became a doctor in 1911, helped develope the UW Madison medical school into a 4 year program and eventually became its Dean, served in France during WWI, and was appointed Chief Medical Director of the VA by Eisenhower.

    The Madison, WI VA is named after him.

    His history suggests selfless service to the nation for many years.

    His name being associated with this corruption does nothing to honor him, but in fact shits all over him. As is typical of today’s VA and treatment of veterans.

    Ironically, Middleton died of pneumonia at the Madison VA in 1975.

    1. Gilead Science *already* rips off and rapes individuals taking any of their antiretroviral RX’s. If you take the three drug combo called ‘Atripla’ from 2006-7, to this day for -30- tablets, a month’s supply, is a few dollars under $3000. per month. Exact same drug marketing under a slightly different name for Australia and other locations only costs them equiv. of $75. USD. Guess who gets to pay for the recoup of ALL the R&D $$$? Yep, we citizens of the USA. Atripla is used aggressively against both HIV and Hep B and co-infections of same. That drug also is a joint effort between Gilead Sciences and Bristol-Meyer-Squibb.

      These newer RX’s are even crazier in price and guess what? I know from personal experience that the VA does NOT use the most current RX’s available because when I had it and decided to go with Medicare and private Dr.’s and leave the VA healthcare or health-scare back in 2008 the VA was still using shitty meds from the 1990’s and early 1990’s at that, and would not even honor nor look at all the paperwork and lab results I had from the very private Specialist I went right back to….and she firmly believes I would have been dead had I gone the VA route.

      This Dr. Schinazi may have cooked-up a great new RX while working at the VA, but it in no ways obligates the VA to use such modern medicines. I am living proof…only because I used my common sense and high-tailed it away from any VA Hospital.

      Also note that Obama’s Health Commission and Medicare actually INVENTED new higher Tiers in the Medicare Drug Formulary that places these extremely expensive RX’s up there with the most rare and other expensive RX’s which means the patient is responsible for 33% of out of pocket costs and outside extra help from drug companies and the like do not count….bastards. Living it.

      All this “fun” from military medical not testing blood supplies back in the early 80’s from a surgery in which blood transfusions were required. I still think it was more along the lines of…”Let’s give him some of this and see what it does…”

      1. What a nice scam. Grab a ? from another country. Go to the VA and pretend to find s new drug and pow ? Billion dollars and the VA elite sign off. !

        Told you no jobs in the USA. So people have turned into flim flam men and doing an outstanding job doing it.

        Most people would be arrested for fraud. !

        Oh. I forgot it’s VA management. Who will do anything for a buck. !

        Rest in piece. !!!!!

      2. @James– The combo drugs I have to take were developed in the USA and what I meant was fact that those same medicines are costing vastly LESS in other countries, but is exact same drug by same company marketed under a slightly different name. We in the USA are paying big buck$ still 10 years later and this brand new drug will be no different.

        The drug companies now have incentive to develop these “higher tier drugs” because of Obamacare reimbursement. However, I forgot to add that even if I used the VA and my Medicare, what the VA may pay in part for these meds is NOT counted toward the 33% expected copay…we Vets get screwed a few times in mix.

        These same drug companies, Gilead Science in particular, find off-label use for these meds before the patent period wears-off and quickly get FDA Approval for this “Off Label Use” so the damn patent stays in-place, guaranteed $$$$ for the next 10+ years.

    2. When I read that Obama got a Nobel Prize and the first words out of his mouth was ,”For what?” it forever changed how I look at the self angrandizement ego boosting fluffy cloud dancing awards. There is no reward without payment made. I paid my dues. You paid your dues. All the vets studied or denied care for this miracle paid their dues. Men and women who never came back and believed they made their sacrifice for our country’s continued survival paid their dues.

      Men and women that came back but whose spirit is torn and whose nights hold only nightmares and terror paid their dues. Those who came back and rotted away from Agent Orange and the cancer it brought paid their dues.

      Many have paid their dues and our President gets the Nobel, and this brand new multi gazillionaire gets a prize from his buddies at VA. What exactly did he claim to do for America in return for the wealth of Fort Knox? What did he say that his dues where?

      He said he gave 1/8th of his time, less than an hour a day, and all by himself without assistance solved what entire teams of medical researchers held to high ethical standards could not accomplish.

      In so doing he humbly gathered in wealth that cannot be held in any standard vault. One eighth of ones mans time who just happened to be working the rest of the time as a humble public servant.

      A lot of dues have been paid and one man walks away with it all, and the VA gives him a ticker tape parade on the way out. And the wheels keep spinning.

      AFGE – we give America good government, and we do it good and hard.

      1. You’re good at crunching numbers or looking at details redturtle. You should look at Shinazis research paper on PubMed about how an oral Hep C is more cost effective than other treatments that were being researched, and see if his cited numbers crunch out to $1000 per pill.
        I get the sense he deliberately low balled the numbers and generated the research in order to “sell” his cure as better than any others.
        That cost comparison study he did was around mid 2015 if I recall correctly.

  5. You are right Crazy Self, I was at VA, and asked one vet, clerk, about problems with the VA there. He said, “well don’t read that stuff”, then went on to explain the VA is getting a bad rap. Then went on to defend things I never brought up. Perhaps, he lied to me.This S…Nazi seemed to have been in a lot of places at the same time. Remarkable for one man. I’m very much confused as to how one after another keep getting away screwing veterans, stealing from the taxpayers, and even murdering Veterans. None of our voted in politicians seem to care, or even notice?

    1. @Jo3n
      Your last sentence, “None of our voted in politicians seems to care, or even notice?” Shouldn’t be a question. It should be a statement, where you give great advice!
      The “advice” is – come whatever day your voting, vote every politician out!
      I’ve said that before, and I’m saying it now.
      Vote the posers out of office!

    2. I’m an Viet Naum Vet who have seen to much wonderful treatment,,, I”M LYING,,, last year was the last straw pulled on me,,, struggled between last year at this time last year to about 3 months ago,, to find what to do,,, I have one great Doctor that is in the PTSD dept,,, he gives me and has worked with me since he started in 1990,,,( to make one thing clear number of these Doctors got fired in the 90s one for religion ,,,second wouldn’t use the practices the VA was making them practice on us) My Doctor was one of these years later they rehired him ONLY under a contract that no mentioned of religion be talked,,,, today I’m sure do to all that’s going on they aren’t making it an issue,,,, Why is he there He prays that him Doctoring there can change the VA direction on the abusive treatment in PTSD area,,, Let it be know he has to step softly in areas,,, and has been beyond belief in getting me certain Meds ,,, and standing up,,, but he is close to trouble with upper staff,,, he has gain strength in the time he has been there,,,, There are others who will go to as far as they dare to help with difference circumstances,,, One day I don’t know what I’m going to do if the VA once again throws him out again,,, I’m not taking other medicine that would add a better quality to my life know as said to last year last straw of them making my life miserable under there ideal of the VA is helping you,,,, but there is nothing I can do unless I want a total worsen my condition in my life fighting and seem to be all alone on standing against the others who have latterly no intent or interest except there benefits and wage there,,,,, there are good places I could go in the private sector but money is not there to pay for my own way,,,, with a wife who has become also dependent on my income to give her comfort of life ,,, if that’s called comfort,,,, NO SHE CAN’T GET SSI DISABILTIY,,,,, do to the way it is to qualify as to when she worked,,, and of course I’m have to much income to qualify other ways ,,,, thanks God she does get Champ VA,,, it helps but still short by over $1000 a month,,,,I have 15 acres to go and shot and scream on and out of hearing distance ,,,,, is the subsittude for the other medicine I’m not able to get no longer,,,,, does it work??? yes and no,,, I think biting a piece of wood in my mouth the old fashion way would work better till pain or hurt is tempered down,,,,,Its government ran and union controlled no one that should get fired will ever get fired,,, and no one in are elected government will stand up,,,,, I have proof and proof of that also,,,,, People ,, You Soldiers out there I have even been called a Terriost and the FBI sent out to me but the sheriff of that county stooped them from showing there faces to me,,, who did this OH BUT ONE OF OUR ONCE LOVED SENATOR DASCHEL,,,, and Johnson of SD,,, all I did is asked for help,,,, to get my disability,,,, yep ,,,, real helpful,,, I have NO NO NO love for any of the VA ,,,they have made a life for me ruined from adding to PTSD to financial to physical,,,, have almost no nothing in my life,,, but do to my grandfather and mother gave me this place to live,,, not gave I’m making monthly ,,paying for it,,,, but to me gave,,,

  6. I CALLED THIS OUT LAST YEAR,,, that veterans are genie pigs,,,, here is a proof example,,,, not just double dipping ,,, but also using us for research,,,, okay lets spin the wording I used proof,,, bend over ,,,,

    1. Here is a copy and paste from an OIG report about a paient with Hep C denied a transplant. He got one at his own expense at a non VA place.

      When you eead this, understand that at the time Portland was engaged in illegal highly unethical procedures involving experimental organs which were frozen prior to transplant to see how well it worked out. Were never told they were test items.

      Now why would this guy be refused at Portland but not other VA? Simple. Follow the money. There is no money to be had in transplanting an experimental organ into a Hep C patient, if,the study is to see how well organs do in otherwise healthy folks.

      This guys life was tossed out a VA lab window to make room for frozen organs for,the “right” folk. It is,unclear id this veteran was flagged by DBC but likely as he stood up for his rights.

      Read what our government recommes when a vets life is tossed away next time;

      “We concluded that when a patient has a condition regarded as an absolute contraindication at some but not all VATCs, the patient’s case should be evaluated by VATCs that do not view the condition as an absolute contraindication.
      We recommended that the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) consider whether or not changes to their review process should be made to address facility specific absolute contraindications to transplants.”

      which meanw they said Hep,C disqualifies him for care absolutely, but only at Portland VA while those studies were going on.

      1. So it’s quite literally, ‘Nazi’ Research but lower calories but still no liabilities? Bastards. What an unfortunate name for Dr. Schinazi to have. However, I no longer believe in coincidences.

  7. Shades of Under Secretary Perlin who purloined the DNA program developed by NYS in partnership with the VA – changed some of the names and presented it as his own work – starting his own initiative for which he is an outside director. He only got a million when he left the VA – piker.

  8. Lolz I have all kinds of VHA paper with those black lines redacting out everyhing too! Some pages are all black and it is always the names. The funny thing is in my FOIA requests, since I know names mostly, and the redacter machine only types over letters, it is easy to match name length to the black space. Like a puzzle.

    Isn’t the VA just like that? Everything at VA, from the moment a vet steps across the threshold becomes a giant puzzle to unwind to get the truth? Each nugget of truth leads to a bigger picture that is more puzzling. I am 100% certain that it takes more than even a specialty lawyer to puzzle through the morass of pitfals and harms that await any given veteran at VA.

    The VA seems to be saying of this man who siphoned off a bit of the honey for himself, that he has inpsired others. Sure, they say it with a lisp that sounds like that snake in Jungle Book (Trussssst in me, Jussssssst in me…) that makes it sound wierd but I am certain that $$$$$$$ that enormous inspire all sorts of folks across America who also thirst for some sweet honey. When you put a pot of honey with a REALLY loose lid on it outside in the sunshine, deep, deep in hundred acre wood and place signs pointing to it, can we really blame the one who goes and gets smackeral or two? or 400 million? It is all the same…

    I called it Pooh Bear Syndrom (PBS). No pot of honey is safe from PBS sufferers and the bees are just out of luck.

  9. I have to disagree on one point made. I have three service-connected ratings but some of the most serious surgeries i have had were not, i repeat not service-connected,. Including Colon Cancer. Just wanted to clear that up.

  10. So the veteran is sick from being inoculated like cattle with unsanitary jet-gun. Then a cute is developed by the v.a. But it’s sold and delayed for years while veterans suffer and die in shame from propaganda about hcv, murder for profit,

    1. I was generally last in line during inoculation, barely got the cure in time, paid $5 for it, before va or insurance had any approval for it, I watched in agony while it was developed, I watched friends die of hcv, I tried interferon treatment and it damaged my brain and the hcv3 got more aggressive. No va benefits general discharge, only served about 1 year, no government assistance, self employed private insurance, they denied coverage saying it was experimental drug not on formulary. Disabled and dying I was told to hire a lawyer by social security. Gilead provided the cure to me for $5 I was lucky and applied for help from them. I was trying to get into clinical trials but not an ideal candidate. Watched liver cancer kill a friend with hcv1 watched another go insane and die of liver failure from hcv and watched as another killed themselves suffering from end stage liver damage from hcv. One got it from blood supply two were veterans another was iv drug abuser. They need to notify all the veterans who served during jet-gun inoculation use

  11. Shinazi must have had many other “VA (paid employees) scientists” helping him in his “researches”! I wonder if any of them saw any $$$$? I doubt it!

    If one notices, his many ‘researches’ began during the Clinton administration. Remember Hillary’s failed healthcare system? Which, by the way, is exactly what Obama crammed down America’s throat!
    In my opinion, this is the first “red flag”!
    How many other “miracle drugs” did he receive taxpayers monies?
    How long was he in ownership of that drug company?
    How many of his “experimental drugs” had he developed, then gain taxpayers monies by selling them to VA and civilian healthcare professionals? There has to be more than just a couple.

    In my opinion, the guy pulled off one hell of a scam. Of course, he’s not the only one. There’s plenty of taxpayers monies to go around. Or so many swindlers out there believe! The VHA’s, and a good number of other entities, Nationwide are always somehow profiting off the taxpayers.
    How else could one see this?
    Healthcare is given out minimally at VHA’s. For example: when blood is drawn by lab. What are the two main things, and more than likely the only two things, your PCP discuses. “Sugar levels and Cholesterol levels”! Could there be other health problems? Possibly, yet, no one wants to deal with that.

    Yesterday, I read an article on our abysmal (civilian) healthcare (ACA) system. Many commented on the “…elderly not being properly being cared for!’ Many remarked that it’s as though the system WANTS us to die. Many said the ‘system’ isn’t providing proper healthcare because the “…costs outweighs the benefits!” I believe that’s like saying the elderly, civilians and veterans, have outlived their usefulness! How wrong can they be!? As long as our brains function, we are useful. How else could we catch these government entities in so much corruption, waste, fraud and abuse!

    1. P.S.
      I forgot. The next time your at VHA, as any one of those employees IF they’ve heard about any of the “scandals” of VA. I’ll bet many will say “NO!”
      They might admit to McDuck’s comment on “Disneyland’s wait time fiasco comment!” Other than that, they’ll dummy up!
      That shows me just how corrupt a majority of VA employees really are!

      1. to add: ask your local civilian doctor the same. i’ve yet to hear any of them say, “yeah i’ve been hearing about it”.

        many trained(or whatever the word is) at VA. as they used to brag about, not so much bragging now is there?

        our local doctors i suspect have professional and casual dealings with VA/VBA in one form of another. almost impossible not too. it is not so much those dealings exist that bother me, it is the neg treatment and neg perception the VA has labeled veterans that trickles down to these civilian entities.

      2. The Social Security folks do the same. I am trying to show them the difficulty of getting a VA Hospital appointment . I am also trying to show them the irregularity of follow-up care and the 100% lack of reliability of my medical records. I am also trying to show that those same records have been both modified or completely manufactured.so much so that they are effectively lying to any institution or government department that requests those records. I believe that is actually a criminal act. I’ve also received at least once a letter stating that all my medical AND personal information was compromised by a computer issue. My message to The VA on that is “once compromised, FOREVER COMPROMISED”; you can’t un-ring that bell. Now they have the audacity to put up a sign in the clinic stating that, “unruly behavior and we will call the police” or something similar. They are in 100% denial of their crimes against veterans. See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil IS EVIL to veterans.

      3. i forgot to add, ask anyone at a VSO if they know of any of these reports of VA/VBA thuggery.

        i have, whether a VSO or office assistant, guess what, same answers.

        it is almost like a canned reply, developed either by their national office or VA.

  12. Ben asked; “So where did he find the time to run his private pharmaceutical research firm while also working at VA? The researcher claims he only worked at VA 7/8 time, whatever that means.”

    7/8 of Dr. Schinazi’s time was spent working at the VA would actually mean since there’s generally 40 hours a week to any given VA employee, whether they are a M.D. or a clerk, and generally, 4 weeks a month, that would make 4 x 40 hours=160 hours a month. IF Dr. Schinazi worked as he stated, 7/8 of time AT the VA that would mean equiv. of 7 hours a day x 5 days in a week=35 hours a week x 4 weeks=140 hours a month out of 160 hours available a month, which means there’s a hell of a lot more to this story and money grab than has been let on.
    The FOIA Request’s redacted and blacked-out info is definitely hiding some juicy VA crap the VA does not want public.

    (if my mathematical computation this early a.m. is incorrect, please correct me)

    1. So roughly, any given month, Dr. SchiNazi only spent 3 days actually “working” on his immunotherapy experimental research…oh but lest we forget, this research was done ON Veterans as lab rats, so did the unlucky bad lot “volunteers” writhe in agony for 27 days a month since, you know, Dr. SchiNazi only does this as a casual “hobby” on the side, since after all he DOES work full time at the VA?

      Do not get me wrong, I am all for great research AND kudos where deserved but this Dr. screwed the Taxpayers and the VA and then some….am thinking if one could follow the bread crumbs (names/numbers) blacked-out on Ben’s FOIA Request and follow that $$$, we would see whose fleeced the pot.
      Meanwhile, the VA gets screwed happily again when at the increased ridiculous price of the drug after Gilead Science gets it, they have the audacity to give the VA a “DEAL” at 50% off at $500 a PILL?!!!

      Someone is still laughing all the way to the bank in an offshore tax haven and having a cocktail on beach watching sunrise with McDuck with Graves and Rubens in their monster truck a little further down same beach. 🙂

      1. I had the treatment at the VA for hep-c and the treating doctor told me it was a 1,000 a pill, I thought that was high so when I got home and looked it up online it was 1,150 so the VA gets a 150 discount that’s it MC 72-76

    2. What he is saying is the worked a 45.6 hour work week, 40 hours of which were at VA. That would be the 7/8 he has sold America on.

      Remember, he is now the poster child for their recruitment posters. Civilian docs are WAY too exposed to legal action when they behave like this – VA docs walk away with 400 million and this chub muffin looks fat and happy about it. If you were a young doctor educated at Far East University this might be iust a tiny incentive to get on board. All the Buhdda statues I have seen look pretty chubby and happy for it.

      Just knowing and being a buddy to anyone who scores the big one like him is set for life. At least as long as they keep their mouth shut…REALLY tight.

      1. Yep, redturtle, and, if you’ll remember, as soon as Congress wanted to talk and hear from him, he sckeedadled pronto!

    3. How many on that panel review are listed as co authors on any of Shinazis publications?

      I can see no reason whatsoever for that to be redacted.

      Why is it no previous news articles on Shinazi cite his great work being done part time? A VA Vantage Point post dated August 2015 says he was a “senior research career scientist” at Atlanta VA. Nothing about any part time activity.

      What research did he complete during the 7/8 time he worked for the VA?

      He’s following the money though since PubMed is showing him Now researching Zika.

  13. It was never his to sell, if funded by taxpayers, and him being an employed researcher, than what he discovered or created would have been property of the VA. My guess is he paid the right people off to allow the sell to go through. Since VA waste taxpayers money daily, and no one is their to protect the publics interest. Someone in VA should have been dragging this guy into court, But he must have reached someone in Congress also with a little money? I guess there is always the chance that VA does not have their researchers sign proper paperwork to cover them legally for this type of occasion. Or for that matter they probably lost the paperwork if they ever had it. I don’t blame the doctor, he pulled off a brilliant scheme, Maybe I should sell the VA Hospital in Indianapolis? Just go there an say I own it because I am a disabled Veteran and sell it to a private company.

  14. I’d be more upset, but The VA never tells me what exactly they are testing for and appear not to treat a person’s condition if it is not service-connected. It’s as if they treat and test for ONLY PRE-EXISTING CONDITIONS. You might get lucky once in a great while; but for the most part The VA treats service-connected issues only. Even then, the wait is long.

    1. You. Are right about the service connected part and many. Many Veterans have been lied to by the regional office telling them their record’s were destroyed or lost and they deny their claim. !

      The veterans suffering with that disability for decades without treatment. Just because someone wanted a bonous and denied the veterans claims.

      Decades later finding out the regional office lied and they had the record’s all along.

      The record’s magically reappear after the veteran hires an attorney. !!!!!!

      See anything wrong with this picture.?

      This is proof. Veterans are being denied their deserved disabilities on purpose !

      Employees doing this must be held accountable and arrested for fraud. !!

      Many. Veterans have taken their lives. Because of the employees lieing and refused vital care. !

      Thank you VA employees. Mission accomplished. !

      1. i can vouch for this too from my experiences at VA/VBA.

        the bizarre “look the other way” that VA doctors do in order NOT to correctly diagnose (as can be possible) veterans. i’m writing of veterans who have the mil and med documents to prove they are injured/sick that occurred on active duty.

        the VA has legal people to help build multi-billion drug company’s? those same legal people help to push veterans to bottom of worth-pole. they do use veterans for test subjects and we all know it.

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