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Commentary

EDITORIAL: Healing the FDA from within
The Star-Ledger, 11-30-04

A stronger postmarketing drug safety regime may be long overdue, but a new, separate agency is not the answer. “What’s needed is for the FDA to become a strong watchdog for both new drug applications and postmarket use. That means giving the agency new powers to order necessary tests and yank products off the market.”

There is yet another reason we should add to the mix: creating an adversarial agency that would police the FDA would work about as successfully as having the FBI watch the CIA. Experience has shown that competing federal agencies inevitably become demoralized and self-defeating, giving rise to destructive rivalries that can only hurt the public interest.

The FDA is the agency with the most expertise and experience in this sector, and thus is best positioned to compare real risks and benefits. Strengthening agency funding and empowering it to undertake more targeted, science based regulation is the best response to the current challenges facing the FDA and its stakeholders.



Project FDA.
  
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