The Covid-19 pandemic has exposed large pharmaceutical companies once again engaged in the worst kind of profit. They do this because they know they can hold the world to ransom for access to protective vaccines that they did not invent but which they monopolize in manufacturing and distributing.
This week, one of the films presented at the European Film Festival is Save Sandra, a beautiful but tragic story of Sandra, then the six-year-old daughter of William and Olga Massart, and her battle with rare metachromatic leukodystrophy (MLD). . . Unfortunately, instead of being a battle against the disease itself, it also became a battle against a British pharmaceutical company, Shire, who had acquired the experimental drug, Metazym (called Matoxym in the film), sparked expectations as to its effectiveness, but has set a price for it. out of reach of young children who need it most.
In the film, Sandra and her father describe it as a “magic potion” that can relieve her crippling pain and growing paralysis. But despite raising a million euros through a public campaign, the company refused to provide it to them (see this local newspaper report at the time).
Unfortunately, Sandra’s story is not unique.
This is the story of millions of people through …