Late last year, the US government released a 60 page report entitled: FDA Science and Mission at Risk. A more honest title would have been: FDA Science and Mission in Shambles.
Apart from its title, however, the report was forthright. Here are a few direct quotes from the table of contents:
Major finding: “The FDA cannot fulfill its mission because its scientific base… is weak….”
Major Finding: “The FDA cannot fulfill its mission because its scientific workforce does not have sufficient capacity and capability.”
Finding: “FDA does not have the capacity to ensure the safety of food for the nation.”
Finding: “The development of medical products based on ‘new science’ cannot adequately be regulated by the FDA.”
These failures affect the health of all Americans. Good drugs are not approved or approved after interminable delays. Even after new drugs are shown to be safe, doctors cannot use them with terminally ill patients whose cases are otherwise hopeless. Bad drugs are approved — often on the basis of a recommendation by panels whose members include drug company consultants.
The record with the food supply is almost as bad as with drugs. When fresh food turns out to be contaminated, the only solution the Agency can come up with is to “nuke” it with radiation. What does this do to food? The FDA certainly does not know. If irradiated salad is not unappetizing enough, how about cloned meat, also recently approved.
A veritable revolution is taking place in the science of food, food extracts, and food supplements. Food producers would like to tell the American public about it. Millions of lives could be saved as a result. But the FDA will not permit it. The Agency ignores first amendment protections and censors the communication of valid scientific information.
To persuade Congress to address the comprehensive failure of the FDA, a Petition to Reform the FDA has been drafted. Your signature is vital. We must collect such a large number of names on the Petition that it compels Congressional Action. We will hand deliver the petition to Congressional leaders and urge them to enact comprehensive FDA reform. Congress already knows that the FDA represents a serious problem. This petition will help move them to take the urgent action required.
The petition on the ReformFDA.org site reads as follows:
In November 2007, a 60-page report entitled FDA Science and Mission at Risk was released by the FDA. In this report, the agency admitted that it lacks the competency and capacity to keep up with scientific advances.
The FDA now admits that Americans are suffering and dying because the FDA does not have the scientific ability to ascertain if new drugs are safe or effective or to evaluate scientific claims.
Meanwhile the FDA censors the communication of scientific information and opposes or bans cheaper and often more effective natural remedies in a misguided effort to maintain an FDA-approved drug monopoly.
Some members of Congress think that giving the FDA more money will solve these problems. But the FDA report itself admits that the agency’s scientific ineptitude is not solely due to a lack of money. We should not give the admittedly incompetent FDA any more tax dollars. And we should not finance it with drug company money either because then the agency no longer works solely for the public. Rather than give the failed FDA more money, give it instead a total reform and restructuring.
A reformed FDA should liberate consumers from the chains of archaic medical restrictions that cause millions of Americans to needlessly suffer and die each year. It should support, not censor and hold back, science and innovation.
This should not be viewed as a political issue. Think of what will happen when your next family member (or you) suffers a health catastrophe that cannot be cured because the admittedly incompetent FDA failed to allow or approve a safe and effective therapy.
We, the citizens whose signatures appear below, respectfully request immediate action to reform the FDA. A total overhaul is urgently needed. Everything about the FDA must be taken apart, reviewed, redefined, and recreated so that it supports, not obstructs, the mission of advancing medical science and vibrant good health for all.
To sign the petition online: ReformFDA.org