Why We Should Deregulate Prescription Drugs

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by John Goodman,

from Goodman Institute,

The mainstream media had a field day condemning Donald Trump for promoting off-label uses of prescription drugs to treat the coronavirus. Consider these headlines:

Trump Keeps Promoting Unproven Drugs – Mother Jones
Trump Touts Unproven Coronavirus Drugs – Politico
Trump Urges Coronavirus Patients to Take Unproven Drug – New York Times
Pressed by Trump, U.S. Pushed Unproven Coronavirus Treatment Guidance – Reuters
Experts: Trump’s Touting of an Untested “Game Changer” Coronavirus Drug Is Dangerous – Vanity Fair
Trump is Betting American Lives on Being Right About Coronavirus Treatments – Washington Post

And those weren’t editorials. They were news stories.

So what do you expect to happen when a drug is “proven”? Did you now that “approved” drugs work only half the time? What about side effects? Every drug has side effects. To know how a drug is going to affect you, you have to do your own testing.

What about “unproven” drugs? Did you know that as many as one in five drugs in use in the United States has been prescribed for an off-label purpose? Roughly one-half of all cancer patients are relying on off-label prescriptions. Much of what doctors know they learn by trial and error – outside of FDA tests.

Currently the FDA approves drugs only if they can be shown to safe and effective.

A new GIPPR study by David Henderson and Charles Hooper doesn’t quibble with the safety concern. But once we know a drug is safe, why keep it off the market while testing for efficacy when we know that can really only be established patient by patient — after clearing the FDA hurdles? I briefly discuss the study in the video below.

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