What Trump got wrong about ‘right to try’ for vanguard news .
President Trump bragged about his “right-to-try” law, as he’d done earlier in his State of the Union address. Only this time he added how much the law, which allows terminally ill patients access to unapproved experimental drugs, is saving lives.
“Nobody will understand the lifesaving effects,” said Trump. “People are getting better that were thinking that they were going to die.”
“We have drugs in the pipeline that are showing tremendous progress,” he said. “If somebody is terminally ill let’s let them have access to our drugs.”
In his first address to Congress, Trump called for a federal “right-to-try” law, modeled on existing laws in some states. The law, which passed Congress and was signed by Trump last May,
Gives patients with fatal diseases the ability to request experimental treatment directly from drug companies without approvals from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
But it appears only two patients have been treated under the act, and it is much too soon to tell whether it has saved any lives.
“I always wondered why we didn’t do it before,” Trump said before moving onto his next rally topic.
Before “right to try,” there was a program in place that also allowed patients with fatal conditions to try experimental treatments: The FDA’s expanded access program, also called “compassionate use,”
which began in the 1970s. But “expanded access” required case-by-case approval by the FDA — which was granted in
Virtually every instance in recent years, although not necessarily immediately. “Right to try” involves a direct transaction with the drug manufacturer.
Applications to try experimental drugs under compassionate use increased during the HIV epidemic,