President Barack Obama recently issued an executive order calling on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to look into why many critical medications are in short supply, The New York Times is reporting.
The newspaper says that medicines used to treat life-threatening illnesses, including cancer and bacterial infections, are in short supply in the country and the executive order calls on the government agency as well as drug manufacturers to prevent shortages that have gradually worsened.
The Mesothelioma Center suggests that the order could, in turn, help mesothelioma patients who require these medications to fend off pain and suffering while dealing with a diagnosis of mesothelioma in New England. Like any other form of cancer, chemotherapy and other treatments are available to help fight the illness.
Boston mesothelioma lawyers as well as most other Americans hope that there are no critical shortages of medicines for people who are in dire need of them. This includes people who have been exposed to asbestos and now are saddled with the despair of having mesothelioma.
Mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer, but still affects thousands of people each year. It is caused by exposure to asbestos that may have happened decades ago while working in an old factory, mill, construction site or just from living or spending time in an old building. Asbestos was used for decades in the United States for insulation, to cover piping, in boiler rooms and in other commonly used products like brake pads and ceiling tiles.
For people who are suffering from this form of cancer — which is fatal in 100 percent of cases, usually within 12 months after diagnosis — a shortage of drugs is crippling news. The New York Times reports that the executive order broadens reporting of potential shortages of specific prescriptions, speeds up the review of applications to begin or alter drugs and provides more information to law enforcement authorities about price gouging or collusion.
Most consider the move political, with Obama showing the country he is committed to helping the public despite partisan disagreements in Congress. But regardless of the reason, our mesothelioma lawyers hope this goes a long way to helping mesothelioma patients.
The Mesothelioma Center believes that the order could bring down the price of Alimta, a common chemotherapy drug used for cancer patients and could alleviate the shortage of Cisplatin, a standard treatment used by oncologists on mesothelioma patients.
The New York Times also reports that the President hopes to stockpile some cancer-treating medicines to ensure such a shortage doesn’t occur in the future. Most shortages are chemotherapy drugs, medications used for surgery patients and antibiotics for infections.
No one wants there to be a shortage of medicine when they need it, but let’s also hope that officials don’t rush untested drugs into the marketplace that could do more harm than good. After people are hit with the news that they have mesothelioma, they should have the best and most effective medicine available to fight and live comfortably. And they should seek legal help.
The Law Offices of Jeffrey S Glassman provides representation for victims exposed to asbestos who have been diagnosed with mesothelioma in Boston and throughout Massachusetts and New England. Call (617) 777-7777 for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your rights.
More Blog Entries:
Railroad Sued By Employee Exposed to Asbestos, Fears Mesothelioma: November 1, 2011
Pleural, Peritoneal Mesothelioma Linked to Asbestos in Massachusetts: October 28, 2011
Obama Tries to Speed Response to Shortages in Vital Medicines, by Gardiner Harris, The New York Times
Obama’s Executive Order Should Help Mesothelioma Patients Get Chemotherapy, by Tim Povtak, Mesothelioma Center