Monday, June 18, 2007

Here's something to make the FDA and Drug Companies Think Twice

In the US, if a drug, approved by the FDA, is later found to kill people or have horrendous side-effects (such as thalydamide, fen-phen, vioxx, paxil, etc.) then it is withdrawn and maybe the drug company has a law suit in which they have to pay out a few millions, which is nothing compared to the billions they make from such drugs. But that's usually the end of it and life and profit making goes on: FDA staffers and directors later get lucrative jobs with major pharmaceutical corporations or affiliated entities (such as PR firms) and the drug companies continue making billions by selling dangerous drugs to an unsuspecting public.

Things in China are a little different: China's ex-food and drug chief sentenced to death. He took bribes and approved drugs that killed people. Is that so very different from our own FDA? They approve drugs that kill people and one could view lucrative jobs in drug companies or related entities to be a form of bribery. I'm not a particularly blood thirsty person and I don't agree with the death penalty, but perhaps we should take notice of what happened in China and get a bit tougher on the people responsible for approving harmful drugs.

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