A way to end failure-to-warn lawsuits without preempting them
The drug industry hopes that the Supreme Court will find that the doctrine of preemption bars failure-to-warn lawsuits over drugs approved by the FDA. That’s one way to end those lawsuits. Another way is for the FDA to quit approving deadly drugs. This appointment is a step in that direction:
Over three decades, Dr. Wolfe, head of the health group at advocacy organization Public Citizen that Ralph Nader founded, has helped push 16 drugs off the market and slap restrictions on several multibillion-dollar products. He has been so hostile to the FDA under President George W. Bush that he decried its 100th-anniversary celebration in 2006 as a "propaganda campaign" to hide its "unprecedented assault on the American public."
Now the outsider is going inside, mirroring a larger shift in the Washington pendulum toward tougher company regulation. To the consternation of the drug industry, Dr. Wolfe has been appointed to a four-year term on the FDA's Drug Safety and Risk Management Committee, which plays a key role in telling the agency which drugs are safe.
Dr. Wolfe is a first-class consumer advocate and I’m tickled pink that he’s been put in such a position of authority with the FDA. Perhaps he’ll prevent another trasylol debacle.