The Avandia Hearing
This morning the House Committee on Oversight and Reform held hearings on the Avandia controversy and the FDA’s role in the process. Listening to the hearing and line of questioning by the members Diabetic Investor is reminded of something Abraham Lincoln said in a speech before the Illinois legislature in 1837 – “Politicians (are) a set of men who have interests aside from the interests of the people, and who, to say the most of them, are, taken as amass, at least one long step removed from honest men.”
Listening to the various witnesses that appeared today we’re reminded of something Samuel Butler wrote in 1934, “He is considered the most graceful speaker who can say nothing in (the) most words.”
Now that the bright lights are off and everyone has had their moment in sun, where do we stand with Avandia?
Unfortunately as Diabetic Investor suspected we are no closer to a definitive answer on Avandia then we were back when this story first broke. In some respects we’ve actually taken steps backwards rather than forward. Hopefully there we no patients or physicians watching the hearings as they would be more confused than ever. Now these same patients and physicians must wait another month until the FDA meets on July 30th to review Avandia. Just what are these patients and physicians to do in the interim?
As Diabetic Investor said in an earlier email alert everyone will claim they have the best interest of the patient in mind. After watching the hearing Diabetic Investor can state emphatically that nothing could be further from the truth. The FDA and GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE:GSK) have taken CYA to a new level. The physicians who testified were placed in a no win situation and were not given adequate time to explain their positions. And the members of the committee, some of whom who should be ashamed for their line of questioning and comments, did nothing to disprove something Boies Penrose, a Pennsylvania senator, wrote in 1931- “Public office ….. is the last refuge of the incompetent.”
Once again the millions of patients with diabetes and the physicians who treat them are left with no clear guidance from the agency that is supposed to provide guidance. This whole situation is sad and we can only hope that some good comes out of an otherwise dismal set of affairs.