Johns Hopkins Sued for $1 Billion Over Deliberate STD Infection Scheme
More than 750 plaintiffs are suing the Johns Hopkins Hospital System Corp. over its role in medical experiments in Guatemala in the 1940s and 1950s in which subjects—including orphans, other children and mental patients, according to plaintiffs—were deliberately infected with venereal diseases without their consent.
These experiments came to light in 2010.
The Guardian reports:
The lawsuit in Baltimore seeks $1bn in damages for individuals, spouses and children of people infected with syphilis, gonorrhea and other sexually transmitted diseases through a US government program from 1945-56.
The suit claims officials at Johns Hopkins had “substantial influence” over the studies by controlling some panels that advised the federal government on how to spend research dollars. The suit also alleges that Hopkins and the Rockefeller Foundation, which is also named as a defendant, “did not limit their involvement to design, planning, funding and authorization of the Experiments; instead, they exercised control over, supervised, supported, encouraged, participated in and directed the course of the Experiments”.
The suit, which includes 774 plaintiffs, says the experiments were conducted abroad in order to give “researchers the opportunity to test additional methods of infecting humans with venereal disease easily hidden from public scrutiny”.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services says researchers initially infected Guatemalan sex workers with gonorrhea or syphilis, then permitted them to have sex with soldiers and prison inmates with the goal of spreading the disease.
Read more here.
— Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.Wait, before you go…
If you're reading this, you probably already know that non-profit, independent journalism is under threat worldwide. Independent news sites are overshadowed by larger heavily funded mainstream media that inundate us with hype and noise that barely scratch the surface. We believe that our readers deserve to know the full story. Truthdig writers bravely dig beneath the headlines to give you thought-provoking, investigative reporting and analysis that tells you what’s really happening and who’s rolling up their sleeves to do something about it.
Like you, we believe a well-informed public that doesn’t have blind faith in the status quo can help change the world. Your contribution of as little as $5 monthly or $35 annually will make you a groundbreaking member and lays the foundation of our work.Support Truthdig