Editor sorry for drug cost article

The Web site of the student-run Harvard Health Policy Review is up and running after about a week of mysterious down time, and the journal's editor has apologized for running a controversial article without proper bias screening. linkurl:Rumors;http://www.gooznews.com/archives/001223.html circulated last week when the Review Web site was down that Harvard authorities had censored the publication of the article, which addressed a long-standing debate about the total cost for developing a drug, f

By | October 27, 2008

The Web site of the student-run Harvard Health Policy Review is up and running after about a week of mysterious down time, and the journal's editor has apologized for running a controversial article without proper bias screening. linkurl:Rumors;http://www.gooznews.com/archives/001223.html circulated last week when the Review Web site was down that Harvard authorities had censored the publication of the article, which addressed a long-standing debate about the total cost for developing a drug, from the spring 2008 issue. The article, written by linkurl:Donald Light;http://sph.umdnj.edu/staff/staffDetail.cfm?tblPers_ID_pk=564 of the University of Medicine & Dentistry of New Jersey and linkurl:Rebecca Warburton;http://publicadmin.uvic.ca/faculty/warburton/index.htm of the University of Victoria, describes the authors' difficulty in publishing a critique of another article, which estimated drug development costs at $802 million and was published in 2003 in the Journal of Health Economics (JHE) by linkurl:Joseph DiMasi;http://csdd.tufts.edu/About/ResearchStaff.asp at Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development. (For more background on the article click linkurl:here.);http://www.the-scientist.com/news/display/55101/) In response to the article, Richard Frank, one of the editors of the JHE, wrote Huang an Email, saying that the article in the Review was biased against him and his colleagues. "The site was temporarily taken down because we panicked," Huang wrote to the linkurl:Pharmalot blog;http://www.pharmalot.com/2008/10/the-case-of-the-disappearing-journal-article/ in an Email. "We thought that we might have inadvertently published something that was potentially very biased and/or unsubstantiated." Huang has since posted an linkurl:apology on the Web site;http://www.hhpr.org/currentissue/ stating that the editors of JHE had not been contacted to confirm statements made in the article by Light and Warburton. The Review reposted the original version of the article. "We are apologizing that the article was edited in an
 unbalanced fashion (most notably because the JHE editors were not 
contacted at all during the editing process to check any of the
 essential premises of the article or to offer any type of response or
 statement)," Huang told The Scientist in an Email. "We are also apologizing for any confusion we may have
 caused in taking the Web site down."

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