Life Sciences

GAO: FDA advisory boards would benefit from more outreach

Device Regulation Alert: Safety, Compliance and Reimbursement News, October 20, 2008

Expanded outreach efforts could help the FDA mitigate barriers to recruiting qualified advisory committee candidates without potential conflicts of interest, according to a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report.
                   
Individuals the FDA wanted to recruit for advisory boards were often the same individuals the pharmaceutical and medical device industries sought to conduct research, creating potential conflicts of interest. The FDA could avoid some of these conflicts of interest by expanding its search for advisory board members and changing its member recruitment method, the GAO said.
 
Under certain circumstances, the FDA may grant a conflict of interest determination to an advisory committee member who has a conflict of interest and whose expertise is needed to participate in an advisory committee meeting. In 2004 and 2006, the FDA granted a total of 234 conflict of interest determinations to allow members to participate.

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