Washington, D.C. – With the recent reports regarding the safety and side-effects of popular drugs like Vioxx and Celebrex, and today with naproxen used in Aleve, U.S. Senator Harry Reid released the following statement:
“The recent revelations regarding the safety of popular drugs and food are deeply troubling. For the third time in as many months, we have learned of the potential for serious side-effects regarding drugs and food used by a vast number of Americans. In this country, we count on the Food and Drug Administration to ensure that the drugs we use are safe. We must be able to rely on our government’s assurances when these drugs and food are approved for use.
“Over the past few months, we have learned about the potential for serious adverse side-effects from Vioxx and Celebrex. Today, we have learned that naproxen, the painkiller used in Aleve, may increase the risk of heart attack or stroke.
“Despite the vital role the FDA plays in ensuring the safety of drugs and food for all Americans, this Administration has failed to fill the role of its Administrator with a permanent appointment. Even worse, last month, an FDA safety officer testified that the agency has not been able to keep unsafe drugs off the market and that scientists who questioned the safety of drugs were often pressured. This is simply unacceptable.
“The FDA should not be a yes-man for the pharmaceutical industry. The safety of America’s patients is too important.”