American Lung Association and the American Thoracic Society Response to Philip Morris International’s Purchase of British Producer of Respiratory Treatments
New York, NY -- July 19, 2021 - In response to an announcement from Philip Morris International that the company has agreed to acquire Vectura, a British inhaled medicine company, American Lung Association President and CEO Harold Wimmer and American Thoracic Society President Lynn Schnapp MD, ATSF shared the following statement:
"The announcement that Philip Morris International (PMI) wants to acquire an inhaled medicine company is the latest reprehensible choice from a company that has profited from addicting users to its deadly products.
“We are deeply concerned that PMI will use the inhalation services technologies developed by Vectura to make their tobacco products more addictive. We are also deeply troubled that this company could further profit from the disease their products have caused by now selling therapies to the same people who were sickened by smoking PMI cigarettes. We also note, the proposed acquisition of Vectura by PMI creates a complex entanglement of conflicts of interest throughout the respiratory medicine supply chain that could undermine public confidence in essential medical products. It is clear this acquisition is not in the best interest of the public and lung disease patients, or even the medical drug and device industry.
“The American Lung Association and American Thoracic Society are disappointed that the board of Vectura, a maker of essential medical products, has approved this sale. We urge the shareholders of Vectura to reject the proposed sale. Failing share holder action, we urge the British government to use its oversight authority to intervene and stop the sale.”