Sen. Ron Johnson: ‘Right to Try’ Drugs Are Safe

Sen. Ron Johnson: 'Right to Try' Drugs Are Safe

Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., said that drugs that are used under “right to try” legislation are safe.

“They’ve already passed Phase 1 safety, now that isn’t the be all end all, but it shows it’s safe enough to continue the clinical trials,” Johnson said on Hill.TV.

“This isn’t the Wild West, this is (not) snake oil, these are drugs that are really promising, or else the drug manufacturers wouldn’t be engaged in the very expensive FDA process,” Johnson, the legislation’s chief sponsor, said in the interview.

The “right to try” law allows terminally ill patients to try experimental medical treatments that have not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration.  President Donald Trump signed the bill into law May 30. He called it a “fundamental freedom” that would provide hope and save lives.

“These are terminal patients, they have no other alternative, they’re facing the end of their life. It’s up to them to assess that risk, working with their doctor,” Johnson added.

However, some Democrats and public health groups are against the legislation. “FDA oversight of access to experimental treatments exists for a reason  — it protects patients from potential snake oil salesmen or from experimental treatments that might do more harm than good,” said Rep. Frank Pallone Jr., D-N.J., The Hill reported.

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