Public Opinion of FDA: Improving (Sort of)

Biocom and PwC recently weighed with a survey on the industry's view of FDA.  Harris Interactive has published results of a public opinion poll  on FDA  for the Wall Street Journal Online.  They're mixed, at best. To view a summary of the entire report, click here. Half of the 2,482 adults who responded to the survey believe that FDA is doing a "fair or poor" job ensuring the safety and efficacy of new drugs.  Nearly six in ten faulted the Agency for not ensuring that innovative drugs come to market more quickly. Most respondents were also skeptical that new initiatives (funded by user fees) will help much, and they don't appear to think too highly of user fees either.  (Harris didn't ask people what the Critical Path was...how many people could have answered that one?) The same people who criticize the Agency for "not ensuring that innovative drugs come to market more quickly" are likely the first to fault it for pushing innovative drugs through too quickly, when problems arise. The public needs to realize that you can't have it both ways.  There is a tradeoff between fostering innovation and ensuring safety, and establishing the right balance takes time, and resources. -AMS TABLE 1

RATING THE FDA

"Based on what you know or have heard, how good a job do you think the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) does on"¦?"

Base: All Adults
   

Positive*

Excellent

Good

Negative**

Fair

Poor

Not Sure

Ensuring the safety as well as the efficacy of new prescription drugs

2004

%

56

14

43

37

27

10

7

2006

%

36

7

29

58

35

23

6

2007

%

45

7

37

49

29

20

6

Ensuring that truly innovative prescription drugs come to market more quickly

2004

%

29

4

25

62

34

28

9

2006

%

22

4

18

70

34

37

8

2007

%

34

3

30

58

31

26

9

*Excellent or good. **Fair or poor. Note: Percentages may not add up exactly to 100% due to rounding.

TABLE 2

PUBLIC PERCEPTIONS OF POTENTIAL FDA REFORMS

"The U.S. Senate recently passed a bill that would provide the FDA with new responsibilities. How confident are you that the following measures would help improve drug safety?"

Base: All Adults
 

Extremely/ Very Confident/ Confident (NET)

Extremely Confident

Very Confident

Confident

Not Very/ At All Confident (NET)

Not Very Confident

Not at All Confident

Not Sure

Establishing a computerized network to scan insurance and pharmacy records for indications of safety issues with new prescription drugs

%

52

6

12

34

37

26

10

11

Increasing fines for pharmaceutical companies who fail to comply with FDA requests for label revisions or additional studies of prescription drugs

%

52

8

12

32

37

25

12

11

Allowing the FDA to fine pharmaceutical companies for false or misleading ads

%

54

9

14

31

36

24

12

10

Note: Percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding.

TABLE 3

PUBLIC PERCEPTIONS OF COST-EFFECTIVENESS COMPARISONS

"The U.S. House of Representatives recently passed a bill that would provide $3 billion to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality to compare prescription drugs in order to determine which are the most cost-effective. Funding would come from the federal government, health plans and employers. Health plans would then use this information to help decide which therapies are most appropriate for their plan members. How confident are you that these kinds of cost-effectiveness comparisons would"¦?"

Base: All Adults
 

Extremely/ Very Confident/ Confident (NET)

Extremely Confident

Very Confident

Confident

Not Very/ At All Confident (NET)

Not Very Confident

Not at All Confident

Not Sure

Help contain healthcare costs in the U.S.

%

22

2

4

16

67

41

27

10

Help contain healthcare costs for people like you

%

23

2

4

17

66

39

27

11

Help ensure that patients receive safe and effective prescription drug treatments

%

31

1

5

25

58

35

23

11

Note: Percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding.

TABLE 4

POTENTIAL IMPACT OF REFORMS ON INNOVATION

"How concerned are you that the following measures would limit people's access to new and innovative prescription drugs in the future?"

Base: All Adults
 

Extremely/ Very Concerned/ Concerned (NET)

Extremely Concerned

Very Concerned

Concerned

Not Very/ At All Concerned (NET)

Not Very Concerned

Not at All Concerned

Not Sure

Establishing a computerized network to scan insurance and pharmacy records for indications of safety issues with new prescription drugs %

47

6

10

31

39

29

10

14

Increasing fines for pharmaceutical companies who fail to comply with FDA requests for label revisions or additional studies of prescription drugs %

46

5

10

31

41

30

11

13

Allowing the FDA to fine pharmaceutical companies for false or misleading ads %

43

6

8

29

45

31

14

12

Funding federal research to provide health plans with cost-effectiveness data for prescription drugs %

55

10

13

31

31

22

9

14

Note: Percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding.

TABLE 5

PUBLIC PERCEPTIONS OF USER FEES

"Currently some of the FDA's drug review activities are funded by user fees paid by pharmaceutical companies. To what extent do you agree or disagree with the following statements about these user fees?"

Base: All Adults
 

Strongly/ Somewhat Agree (NET)

Strongly Agree

Somewhat Agree

Neither Agree Nor Disagree

Strongly/ Somewhat Disagree

Somewhat Disagree

Strongly Disagree

Having pharmaceutical companies fund FDA activities is a good way of saving taxpayers money %

29

7

21

34

37

17

20

Having pharmaceutical companies fund FDA activities means that the FDA won't be as rigorous as it should be when reviewing new prescription drugs. %

57

26

31

28

15

10

4

Note: Percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding.
Show Comments
Hide Comments

Join the discussion

We welcome your thoughtful comments.
All comments will display your user name.

Want to participate in the discussion?

Register for free

Log in for complete access.

Comments

  • <p>I thank the manufacturers of generic drugs. Without them, I could not see myself spending my worthwhile penny to medicines that are expensive. The generic drugs leveled the playing field. - <a href="http://www.prlog.org/11650566-kyle-thomas-glasser-travels-to-central-america-to-provide-medical-assistance-to-those-in-need.html">Kyle Thomas Glasser</a> </p>

    Reply

RSS feed for comments on this page | RSS feed for all comments