March 7, 2012

How the FDA keeps you
sick and in pain

The Wall Street Journal occasionally runs some good information. Well, on this one, it hit a grand slam! The Journal says that America is on the precipice of losing its coveted world status as the icon for medical innovation. Why? Because the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) is destroying innovation — and, as a result, the agency is putting your health at risk.

The Journal article calls for fundamental changes in how the FDA (Fraud and Deception Administration, in my book) operates. Congress ignorantly gave the beast power to stifle anything based on safety AND efficacy. The Journal is now calling for Congress to revamp the latter and give the FDA the power to regulate for safety only.

Wow, what a breath of fresh air. This plea exactly mirrors my own calls. I have no problem with regulating for safety. But effectiveness should be between the doctor and the patient. Government bureaucrats have no business in that equation.

So how is the agency destroying innovation? Many things, from stem cells to ozone and ultraviolet blood irradiation therapy have an unparalleled record of safety. But to prove effectiveness would require millions, perhaps billions of dollars and take many years. In the meantime, the Journal notes how many people who could benefit today might not be around if and when these wonders can make it through the draconian agency.

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The article noted that the agency must monitor 25% of all spending in America. This includes food, drugs, cosmetics, and many other every-day products. With this kind of reach and a stranglehold on innovation, the FDA effectively keeps many people sick and in pain because it doesn’t allow them easy access to treatments that work.

Destroying innovation doesn’t just affect the quality of care in the U.S. It also impacts our economy. U.S. firms supply up to 60% of the world’s medicines. But the Journal warns that countries like Israel, Singapore, and China are poised to leapfrog over us. I have no problem with our drug companies losing market share. But I would like it filled with more and better choices, rather than more drugs.

I’ve repeatedly asked you to write your Congressional representatives to demand changes to the FDA license to exist, along the identical lines of the Journal. The Journal says that there is a window of opportunity here to make this change, as there is FDA legislation that must move through. I agree. We need to take advantage of this opportunity. Please contact the Journal and tell its editors how delighted you are at their position on the FDA (safety, not effectiveness). Then contact your elected representatives (you can find their contact information at www.usa.gov/Contact/Elected.shtml) to express the same — and make sure you refer your representatives to the Journal article. It will carry a lot of weight. Perhaps the Journal might have fired a shot to be heard round the world.



Ref: Wall Street Journal, 2-14-12.


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