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Baxter Healthcare Corp., a drug and medical device maker, spent $730,000 lobbying Congress, the Department of Commerce, the Department of Health and Human Services, and the Department of Homeland Security on health care issues in the first quarter. Baxter manufactures the blood-thinner heparin, which is used by kidney patients to prevent blood clotting during dialysis. The corporation lobbied for more funding for kidney disease awareness and on funding for the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which reviews the safety and effectiveness of all United States pharmaceuticals. The company also lobbied for free trade agreements with Korea and international protection for drug patents.

Earlier this year, Baxter recalled all of its heparin vials due to a contamination alleged to be related to hundreds of allergic reactions and eighty-one deaths. The FDA suspects the contamination came from a raw contaminant imported from China. Chinese officials, however, say it is too early to tell whether the contamination came from China and accuse the United States of blocking their efforts to investigate.

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