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05/25/2012

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Rich Berkowitz

Finally, it’s on the table and in the open. An editorial that calls for the largest vertically-integrated healthcare corporation to be broken up. The question raised is whether this company can operate ethically when it is both the largest provider of dialysis treatments as well as the largest equipment and supply manufacturer. It would be a great business plan if it wasn’t about health care, where peoples’ lives hang in the balance.

Should one company reap profits from different business segments when they may have inherent conflicts if not operated properly? The Fresenius Granuflo® debacle may have been the tipping point. It appears Fresenius treated its external facility customers differently than its own. The only Fresenius response to date has been that they were awaiting “pending further data collection, analysis, and development — might or might not eventually support conclusions warranting general external or peer reviewed publication.” But the fact remains they were treating the situation differently internally than externally. That is a conflict that is completely unacceptable in healthcare.

While either knowingly or suspecting an issue with the usage of Granuflo, Fresenius continued to market and sell the product to other providers as they were sending out urgent memos to their own facilities and nephrologists.

Chuck Weddle

I couldn't agree more!

When I interviewed with my boss, Dr. John Sadler 32 years ago, he said to me that he "didn't think people should get rich off of others poor health" and that was why he set up our company as a not-for-profit. That philosophy became so engrained in my beliefs that I am still with him today.

For companies such as Fresenius and Amgen to work the system the way they do should be criminal.

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