One of the most politically-connected yet scandal ridden vaccine companies in the united states, with troubling ties to the 2001 anthrax attacks and opioid crisis, is set to profit handsomely from the current coronavirus crisis.
by Whitney Webb and Raul Diego
Part 11 - The A Team
It is worth noting that Hauer was not the only key government official that had aided BioPort and was later awarded with a position on its board of directors. A few years after Hauer became a board member of Emergent Biosolutions, the company added Dr. Sue Bailey to its board in 2007.
Bailey had previously served as the Pentagon’s former top medical official during the late 1990s and played a key role in keeping the military’s anthrax vaccine program from being derailed from persistent concerns from veterans about its safety and adverse side effects.
Back in 1999, when Congress had held its hearings into the anthrax vaccine’s safety following concerns raised by affected veterans, Bailey was part of a panel of experts, which had included BioPort’s Admiral William Crowe. In her prepared statement, Bailey began by underscoring the urgency of the bioterrorist threat, claiming that “at least ten nation states and two terrorist groups“ possessed biowarfare capabilities and citing a 1958 study by Johns Hopkins University as proof that anthrax vaccinations were safe. She concluded by reassuring members of Congress that they had a “safe and effective vaccine to respond to a well-documented threat.” Neither of these statements would turn out to be true.
Another expert Dr. Katherine Zoon, who was then director of the FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation, concurred with Dr. Bailey’s assessment regarding the safety of the anthrax vaccine in her statement. Zoon, who would subsequently hold key posts at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) and at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), was also added to Emergent’s board of directors.
The statements that had been made by Zoon and Bailey at that hearing were a significant divergence from the FDA’s own appraisal on the long-term safety of the vaccine, according to testimony by Kwai-Cheung Chan of the General Accounting Office (GAO). Chan practically invalidated both Bailey’s and Zoon’s testimony by revealing that the studies they had cited were carried out on a completely different anthrax vaccine that was produced by Merck, not Emergent BioSolutions, among other details.
Chan’s testimony made it clear that BioThrax had no safety track record at all. Not unlike Hauer, Emergent later rewarded Bailey and Zoon for their loyalty to the private sector as opposed to public health with board positions and lucrative stock options.