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PFIZER: MENINGITIS TRUST FUND ADOPTS FRESH VERICATION MEASURES

By NBF News
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The Health Care Meningitis Trust Fund, the administrators of the meningitis fund has said it is adopting a number of additional measures in its quest to identify the genuine participants of the Trovan Clinical Trial conducted by Pfizer in the wake of the 1996 meningitis outbreak in northern Nigeria.

The new development, it was gathered, might not be unconnected with the inability of the fund to get a reasonable number of claimants, whose DNA samples matched with the ones in the participants in the possession of the American company, Pfizer.

A statement signed in Kano by the media consultant to the Meningitis Trust Fund Ltd, Alhaji Ahmed Aminu listed the new measures to include cross -checking the identification cards of the claimants and assessing the photographs from the 1996 clinical site that identified the claimants.

Besides, the board will see the extent to which the claimant's initials, age and gender matches with those in the 1996 Study Participants List released to the board by Pfizer.

Other measures include finding out whether the claimants have any physical condition, characteristics or disability that matched those recorded in any of the case files for study released to the board by Pfizer.

The statement noted that the Meningitis Trust Fund was also checking out whether the claimant possessed any materials or object(s) that were provided to the study participants or their families at the time of the trial exercise in 1996.

The validation measures were activated after the result of the DNA conducted on 14 persons qualified for compensation from a total of 548 claimants that submitted themselves for a DNA test earlier in the year. Eight of these qualified claimants, the statement said had already been assessed and had received their monetary compensations while efforts had been intensified to get the remaining six qualified claimants to come forward for theirs.