"Few could question the sentiment behind the campaign: a fight against cervical cancer. A clutch of famous women, including Liz Hurley, Caprice and Carol Vorderman, signed up to support a crusade to introduce a new NHS screening test that could save the lives of thousands of women. The campaign is due to reach the House of Commons on Wednesday, when MPs will be lobbied on the issue. But an Observer investigation has uncovered how the celebrities have been duped into supporting a sophisticated lobbying campaign secretly orchestrated from Brussels by one of the world's largest public relations firms, Burson-Marsteller. Celebrities contacted by The Observer said they had no knowledge of the lobby group. ... The company, whose headquarters are in New York, has conducted a clandestine lobbying campaign on behalf of Digene, the US biotech firm that would make hundreds of millions of pounds if the tests were introduced in the UK and elsewhere. The idea was to set up a 'grass roots' group of celebrities and other high-profile women that would appear to be an independent body and pressure Ministers to introduce the new screening tests."
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