FDA COMMISSIONER SCOTT GOTTLIEB RESIGNS
U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, MD, resigned March 5, but will remain in his position until April 5.
Dr. Gottlieb, who has led the FDA since May 2017, did not offer a reason for his departure in his resignation letter, although he included: “We were strong in moments of crisis.”
President Trump, who appointed Dr. Gottlieb, praised him in a tweet after news of the resignation broke. “Scott Gottlieb, who has done an absolutely terrific job as Commissioner of the FDA, plans to leave government service sometime next month. Scott has helped us to lower drug prices, get a record number of generic drugs approved and onto the market, and so many other things. He and his talents will be greatly missed!”
CMS Administrator Seema Verma also praised Dr. Gottlieb. “Scott has been both a great leader as FDA commissioner and a wonderful friend. I am honored and privileged to have had the opportunity to work alongside him and see all that he has accomplished for the American people to spur medical innovation, increase access to generic drugs, and advance many other public health priorities. I join the entire HHS family in thanking him for his service.”
Trump opponents predictably used the resignation as another opportunity to criticize the president, arguing that Dr. Gottlieb’s decisions favored industry rather than public health. Others complained that his resignation will leave a void at the FDA. especially with upcoming budget negotiations. Trump is scheduled to release his annual budget request to Congress in mid-March.
Dr. Gottlieb, a physician and venture capitalist who has served on the boards of several pharmaceutical companies, became known at the FDA for his aggressive plan to crackdown on the sale of flavoured e-cigarettes to curb underage vaping.
The Department of Health and Human Services, which oversees the FDA, initiated a review on his watch in September 2018 of “all research involving fetal tissue” and “all acquisitions involving human fetal tissue.” VTN