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House passes measure giving terminally ill patients more access to experimental drugs

Amy Scott May 23, 2018
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More patients who are terminally ill will potentially have access to experimental drugs under a measure passed by the House last night. President Donald Trump is expected to sign the so-called “right-to-try” bill. Forty states have already passed similar legislation. Currently, terminal patients not covered by those laws have only two options for getting unapproved drugs: They can enroll in clinical trials if they’re eligible or apply for experimental treatment through the FDA’s “expanded access” program. Proponents of the measure say the additional choice gives hope to patients who have exhausted other options. But the new law wouldn’t necessarily guarantee access.

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