Two Boston meetings look at the role of patient advocates. They offer two very different perspectives.

Pharmaceutical manufacturers often  look to patient advocates for help winning approval for new drugs. Their most recent success in this area was the FDA’s approval of a new drug for Duchenne muscular dystrophy. That decision came despite recommendations against approval from FDA staff. In an editorial, the Boston Globe questioned the FDA’s move while noting … Continue reading Two Boston meetings look at the role of patient advocates. They offer two very different perspectives.

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Would you take a pill to prevent AIDS? Those at risk should consider it, says Massachusetts.

The Globe reports today on the push to make an AIDS prevention drug available. After many years of struggling to come up with a vaccine, this was a true breakthrough. (We don't use that word lightly on this page.) But instead of a shot that stays with you for year, here you have to take … Continue reading Would you take a pill to prevent AIDS? Those at risk should consider it, says Massachusetts.

The New Yorker:#Boston researchers are hunting for a #Zika vaccine — trco201

The August 22 edition of The New Yorker includes a story by Siddhartha Mukhergee on Dan Barouch, director, Center for Virology and Vaccine Research at BIDMC. He’s on the hunt for a Zika vaccine and his work on HIV is informing the effort. From the article, which is not behind the NYer pay wall:  

Should the FDA approve Vertex’s new cystic fibrosis drug?

The scene at the FDA hearing was familiar. All the  advisory committees have seen it play out again and again. Yesterday, it was the Pulmonary-Allergy Drug committee: The pharma doc with the convincing statement. The weeping patients. The drug likely to cost a couple thousand a month offering a slim  benefit over an existing drugs. … Continue reading Should the FDA approve Vertex’s new cystic fibrosis drug?

@CommonHealth: Wikipedia and “energy” therapist clash over definition of “respectable scientific journals”

 We link to a CommonHealth guest post by a Spaulding Rehab doc Eric Leskowitz. He promotes new age approach to pain known as "energy medicine " and says he's  been dismissed by Wikipedia as a "quack" despite his peer-reviewed work and Harvard cred Hard to disagree with the first part of Wikipedia's response to a petition … Continue reading @CommonHealth: Wikipedia and “energy” therapist clash over definition of “respectable scientific journals”

Supported by evidence? Mobile health screening gets scrutinized

My latest for HealthLeaders Media looks at Public Citizen charges that a health screening program overstates the promise of its services. Public Citizen takes issue with company claims that cardiac screening saves lives. After issuing am initial statement criticizing Public Citizen as proponent of "government-run health care", HealthFair now says it wants to work with … Continue reading Supported by evidence? Mobile health screening gets scrutinized

Science writers meet in Cambridge MA to discuss the shabby treatment of female sci scribes

On deadline today, but will be keeping an eye on this.  You can too.   The world of science writers has a dual problem that we have confronted recently, involving issues of sexual equality and of sexual harassment. As an initial step toward grappling with these problems, the National Association of Science Writers held a session … Continue reading Science writers meet in Cambridge MA to discuss the shabby treatment of female sci scribes