Journalist Rachel Smalley has spent years reporting on the human cost of what drug-buying agency Pharmac will or won’t fund. She made a Privacy Act request about herself to the agency – and what she found provided insight into the minds of Pharmac’s leadership team, the tactics employed by the agency to “spotlight” journalists, and politicised commentary from some of its most senior executives.
The ugly and deeply unprofessional response to Rachel Smalley is made so much more infuriating because it reeks of a smug Wellington arrogance when it should be far more focused on responding to her legitimate criticisms!
I’m no fan of Rachel’s journalism, but her criticism and focus on Pharmac’s Opaque Conclave funding decisions are legitimate and righteous.
Instead of wasting time and energy on schemes to deal with her, how about responding to the legitimate issues.
I’m a huge fan of the collective design of Pharmac and we should use State bulk buying to keep costs down and stop the Pharmaceutical industry from dominance, but the refusal to properly fund Pharmac and ensure new medicines can be purchased creates enormous resentment from those suffering.
Pharmac should be more responsive to patients needs and pushing for better funding. They shouldn’t be spending time on demeaning journalists asking hard questions.
Who is doing comms for Pharmac?
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