Tuesday, July 03, 2007

None of Your Business

The Associated Press ran a recent story indicating that two top FDA officials who are required by law to post their appointments had not been doing so for several years. The calendars of high-ranking officials Janet Woodcock and Steven Galson were described as "virtually empty" for a period of several years. After a congressional investigation noted the blankness of their calendars, FDA officials filled in their calendars retroactively. To nobody's surprise, their calendars included many meetings with drug industry officials as well as others. Just how blank were their calendars?
There were just three listings for Woodcock between January 1999 and December 2006, even though she occupied two positions during that time that required her meetings to be listed: director of the center for drug evaluation and research and, later, deputy commissioner for operations. Investigators found no listings for Galson, who took over the drugs office from Woodcock on a full-time basis in July 2005.
Yeah, that's pretty blank. I'm not suggesting it is entirely wrong for them to have met with drug industry officials, as that is obviously part of the job. But why cover it up? At the very least, it creates an impression that there is something to hide. Worry not, the FDA has described it as "administrative oversight." Perhaps the FDA has an intern in charge of schedules who resembles the PhRMA intern of John Mack fame.

Hat Tip: AHRP

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