TEXT OF STORY
MARK AUSTIN THOMAS: Today the FDA is holding a public meeting on new plans for the Prescription Drug User Fee Act. This program charges pharmaceutical companies fees to speed up the drug approval process. The act was passed in 1992. Helen Palmer reports from the Health Desk at WGBH, there are strong critics of both the Act and the new proposals.
HELEN PALMER: The FDA and the drug industry jointly came up with the new proposals. The pharmaceutical industry will pay an additional $87 million for the drug approval process. A third of that will monitor the safety of drugs already on the market.
But Arthur Levin of the Center for Medical Consumers says the agreement still falls short.
ARTHUR LEVIN: It needs more enforcement authority, it needs a lot more money, it needs to be held accountable for how well this new money is used to improve safety.
Levin says the industry shouldn’t be paying for the agency that regulates it. And the public’s lost confidence in the FDA, because it approved unsafe drugs like Vioxx.
He doubts if the new proposals can solve that problem.
In Boston, I’m Helen Palmer for Marketplace.
We’re here to help you navigate this changed world and economy.
Our mission at Marketplace is to raise the economic intelligence of the country. It’s a tough task, but it’s never been more important.
In the past year, we’ve seen record unemployment, stimulus bills, and reddit users influencing the stock market. Marketplace helps you understand it all, will fact-based, approachable, and unbiased reporting.
Generous support from listeners and readers is what powers our nonprofit news—and your donation today will help provide this essential service. For just $5/month, you can sustain independent journalism that keeps you and thousands of others informed.