MARKEY: PLAN B APPROVAL GOOD NEWS FOR WOMEN, BUSH FDA STILL LAPDOG FOR DRUG INDUSTRY
Responding to the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) long-overdue decision today to allow emergency contraception (i.e. the Morning After Pill) to be sold over-the-counter, Rep. Edward J. Markey (D-MA), a senior Member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, which has jurisdiction over the FDA, released the following statement:
"This is good news for women across the country who have been waiting patiently for this critical decision. I am still very disappointed that the FDA allowed an extreme political ideology to hijack our nation's health policy for women by delaying the availability of this drug for over a year. The Bush Administration's FDA has much more to do before it can be considered a watchdog for American families, not a lapdog for the drug industry."
Markey has repeatedly urged the FDA to be vigilant in its monitoring of flu and other drug production and implement recommendations by the Inspector General of the Department of Health and Human Services to more closely monitor post-marketing studies of drugs. Markey has also vigorously questioned the FDA's approval process for antibiotics such as Ketek, whose effectiveness and safety have come under scrutiny for serious and sometimes deadly side effects.
The former FDA Commissioner Dr. Lester Crawford broke a promise he made during his Senate confirmation hearings to make a decision on Plan B by September 1, 2005. Dr. Crawford had several holds on his confirmation for his failure to make a decision on the application.