It was on PBS, and I think it is an older program that has been updated. I missed the original. The title was "Dangerous Prescriptions". It revealed how the dam* Pharm companies totally control the FDA senior management.
Did y'all know that any drug that is submitted to the FDA for approval, requires $500,000 from the drug companies to be paid to the FDA, to cover testing? I shore didn't. There is also more money involved, from the drug companies to the FDA (legally). I suppose the drug companies love this, since if approved, they stand to make billions.
Doctors are not required to report any adverse reactions, to any drugs, to the FDA. If the docs want to, they can contact the drug makers and report the reactions. Then the drug makers are required to report their findings to the FDA, within 15 days, though a system called "Medwatch". Anyone who takes a drug, that hasn't been out for over a year or more, is taking a real risk (me thinks).
Many of the FDA scientist with PHD's, but that are not in the higher management levels of the FDA, are rebuked, and set aside to lesser tasks, for finding safety problems with drugs.
The program documented how Fen-Phen was finally removed from the market. Some ultrasound techs in a hospital, in Fargo North Dakota, noticed that a lot of the younger women that they were doing echocardiograms on, all had problems with one or more valves in their heart. They started asking what medicines the women were taking. Most were taking Fen-Phen. They reported this to a cardiologist. He agreed there was a problem (after initially being very skeptical, but noticed it in some of his patients). He contacted the Mayo Clinic in Mn. The Clinic reviewed their records. They agreed there was a problem. They contacted the makers of Fen-Phen. The pharms contacted the FDA as required, but buried the heart valve problem within the Medwatch report to the FDA. The FDA did nothing. Time went on. Finally, doctors from the Mayo Clinic and the cardiologist from Fargo, held a news conference. Then the FDA quickly removed the drug from the market. To date the makers of Fen-Phen, have paid >13 billion in lawsuits.
Congress voted to allow this control, that the pharms have over the FDA. It all came about when people were protesting/semi-rioting the FDA headquarters (late eighties, I believe), because of the slow process of the approval of medicine for HIV treatment. The rules were changed to speed up the approval process for all drugs, and the drug manufacturers were ask to pay the FDA for the required testing of their drug. (The fox is guarding the hen house)
PBS said that more info is available at their website.
Pardon me editorial
Jack B. Amazed (or Naive)