Weekly Roundup – 2/8/08

J0185010Inside the Beltway looking out, it was an exciting week.  Super Tuesday helped narrow the field a bit and candidate fundraising has been quite interesting.  Looking inside the Beltway, the Senate passed an economic stimulus package aimed at propping up a sagging consumer economy. 

And peering in side our own little world of drugs, food and biotech medicines, here is a little bit of what else happened. 

  • First Meeting of Risk Communications Advisory Committee Scheduled – Today’s Federal Register reports on an upcoming meeting.  On February 28, 2008, the committee will meet for the first time, for presentations and discussion of the relation of FDA’s risk communication programs and FDA’s responsibilities. On February 29, 2008, the meeting will continue with presentations and discussion of FDA’s proposed template for press releases announcing product recalls with a view to incorporating best practices of risk communication.  FDA intends to make background material available to the public no later than 2 business days before the meeting. If FDA is unable to post the background material on its Web site prior to the meeting, the background material will be made publicly available at the location of the advisory committee meeting, and the background material will be posted on FDA’s Web site after the meeting.
  • Zocor and Vioxx Can’t Stay Out of Headlines – Reports are in that, without any admission of wrongdoing, Merck has agreed to pay a whopping $650 million in fines related to charges that Medicaid was overbilled for Zocor and Vioxx, according to the Washington Post.   According to the article, this is one of 630 whistleblower cases being investigated by the federal government.  If that is the case, and there are other settlements, look for a continuing battered image for industry.
  • Like Two Parents Aren’t Enough, Try Three… – The BBC reports that scientists have created a human embryo using three separate parents.  Yikes!

That’s it for me this week folks.  Have a good weekend.   

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