FDA calls for sobriety On contraceptives row
The Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) today asked the various groups involved in the issue on the reevaluation and recertification of contraceptives to “exercise sobriety” and “keep the productive dialogue going”.
FDA Director-General Nela Charade Puno issued the call in the wake of what the FDA said is “an escalating attack on the integrity of the agency and its processes” as it comes closer to concluding its review of the contraceptives products.
The ongoing FDA review followed a recent Supreme Court (SC) statement that it may lift the Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) on the country’s Reproductive Health Law as soon as the FDA completes the required public hearing and technical review process on contraceptives which do not induce nor cause abortion.
The TRO was issued at the instance of the Alliance for the Family Philippines, Inc. (AFLI), an anti-RH group.
Puno expressed concern that the assault on the FDA and its processes “from various sides” is “unfair, not just to the agency but to the public it serves”. She said the charges being aired by critics “are baseless and appear to merely aim at watering down the credibility of the decision the FDA may come up with at the end of the review process”.
Puno said that the FDA review is already in its finalization stage and will soon release its resolution on the listed products.
ALFI has questioned the “transparency” of FDA’s ongoing review of the contraceptives. Puno, in turn, recently assured the public that the process is open and transparent. She said the FDA had fully informed the interested parties on the review process and given them enough time to submit their pieces of evidence, whether for or against the recertification of the contraceptive products.
Puno expressed concern that “hysterical remarks against the FDA and the review process” may derail the review process and cause further delay in the implementation of the RH Law.
“The process is technical and scientific in nature and not a political one,” Puno explained. “As scientists, we work with empirical evidence and we make sure that our conclusions are based on facts and not on hysteria,” Puno explained.