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CWA Calls for Withdrawal of FDA Commissioner?s Nomination; American Women Deserve Better

Contact: Stacey Holliday, Concerned Women for America, 202-488-7000 ext. 126


WASHINGTON, Aug. 15 /Christian Newswire/ --Concerned Women for America (CWA) calls for the withdrawal of the nomination of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner Andrew von Eschenbach, citing his pandering to political activists and a drug company.  Von Eschenbach is pushing through a drug approval that is unprecedented in FDA’s history  – to make a high-dose of a drug (Plan B, a morning-after pill) available without a prescription when a low-dose of the same drug (birth control pills) requires medical oversight to protect women from serious health complications.


“The FDA would be overstepping its precedent and authority to make Plan B available nonprescription,” stated Wendy Wright, CWA’s President.  “It defies common sense to allow easy access to a high-dose drug, based on the age of the person who buys it, when a low dose for anyone requires medical oversight.  Under von Eschenbach’s proposal, an 18-year-old could buy the drug and give it to an adolescent, even though the drug owner, Barr, has not adequately tested it to ensure it can be safely used by adolescents.


Von  Eschenbach revealed that his decision to push through this controversial scheme was not based on any legal or regulatory authority.  Additionally, the president of Barr, the owner of Plan B, has admitted that his company can’t enforce an age requirement.


“It is deplorable that the head of the FDA would put his career ambitions and a drug company’s interests above women’s health,” said Wendy Wright, CWA’s President.  “CWA provided legal and regulatory evidence that the FDA does not have the authority to do what it is proposing and medical evidence that any dose of the drug requires medical oversight to protect women’s health. The drug is known to cause serious complications such as blood clots and stroke.   Medical oversight also provides women with critical health care to test and treat other known complications associated with unprotected sex.


“Americans need an FDA Commissioner who cares about women’s health.  Von Eschenbach has shown he is willing to disregard standard safety guidelines for drug approvals.  We hope that he will resign from his position in a timely manner so that a qualified leader can ensure that the powerful FDA does not put women’s health at risk out of political expediency,” concluded Wright.


Concerned Women for America is the nation’s largest public policy women’s organization.