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Manchin Looks Into Pay-To-Play-With-FDA Allegations


U.S. Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia continues to express concern about alleged meetings between pharmaceutical manufacturers and officials at the Food and Drug Administration who oversee safety regulations of painkiller medicine.

In the latest pay-to-play allegations on FDA approval of some highly addictive painkillers, Senator Manchin and Republican Senator David Vitter from La., sent a letter to the Dean of the School of Medicine and Dentistry at the University of Rochester. The letter is in regard to reports that the university hosted meetings where pharmaceutical manufacturers paid upwards of 30k per event to be able to meet with FDA officials.

The FDA recently approved Zohydro ER—a controversial new prescription painkiller—which has up to 10 times as much hydrocodone as Vicodin in an easily crushable form that can be snorted or injected.

The senators’ letter seeks clarity in understanding the role played by University of Rochester employees, federal employees, and pharmaceutical companies in altering the FDA’s approval process including information on payment transfers and lists of attendees.

Glynis Board hails from the Northern Panhandle of West Virginia and is based in Wheeling at the First State Capital Building. She’s been reporting full time for West Virginia Public Broadcasting since 2012. She covers a broad range of topics but focuses on producing and hosting the West Virginia Public Broadcasting's daily news show West Virginia Morning.

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