On April 25, 2013, I attended the Johnson & Johnson shareholder meeting at the Hyatt in New Brunswick with John Fratti. This was my speech:
As President of SaferPills.org, and a victim of fluoroquinolones, I
speak not only for myself, but as best I can on behalf of all those and
their families whose lives have been damaged physically, financially,
and emotionally by fluoroquinolones.
Since 2006, I have suffered chronic pain, eight tendon ruptures which
resulted in painful surgeries, nerve damage, and a host of other
debilitating symptoms, as a result of these dangerous drugs. There is a
large percentage of people just like me who suffer even more than
myself, with some resulting in death.
You told me you would speak to me at last years meeting, but you did not
come talk to me. Though I am sure you have a different schedule, as
CEO, you owe it to the victims of these drugs, as well as to the Johnson
& Johnson shareholders and employees concerned about the company's
reputation and future success, to take the lead, and make doing the
right thing a priority.
As you know, in 1982, Johnson & Johnson made the right choice to be
up-front, honest, and proactive in dealing with the Tylenol-tampering
crisis. Other companies are taking responsibility for what their
products have done to patients. It is not only inconsistent and
imprudent, but of course, immoral and unethical to ignore Johnson &
Johnson's current crisis, and the effect these drugs have had on our
lives, our families, and Johnson & Johnson's reputation.
Optimally, you should withdraw these dangerous drugs from the market
until sufficient research can be done to determine their full effects on
those who have taken them, and take concrete steps to make things right
with the victims, medically and financially. At the very least, you
should take concrete steps to fund research on these effects, and find
I'd like to thank the shareholders and all others in attendance for
listening, as well as all of those in the community for their hard work
and support as we work together to help the victims of fluoroquinolones
and their families, and take active steps to ensure safe alternatives
for patient treatment.
Mr Gorsky, last year you chose not to speak to me after expressing in
front of the shareholders that you would. Carry out that promise and
personify your company credo and sit with me after the meeting to
discuss how we can put patients first.