The FDA Under Pressure
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This weekend, Stephen Hahn, the commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, attracted criticism when he substantially overstated the benefits of an experimental Covid-19 therapy. At a press conference with Trump, Hahn said that a treatment using blood plasma from recovered patients could save 35 of every 100 people who would have died. Those high-profile remarks were incorrect, and they were repeated by others in the Trump administration. Hahn late Monday clarified some of what the data on blood plasma actually show.

But the episode has raised questions about how the agency will review a vaccine, as well as its scientific independence. Senior Editor for Health Care Drew Armstrong spoke to Hahn about the agency’s role in an increasingly politicized federal virus response.

Intelligence Squared
Intelligence Squared
Intelligence Squared
Wake Up Call: Why The Pandemic Exposes The Weakness of the West
Fear is on the march. All over the world citizens have surrendered basic freedoms to the state in order to be protected from Covid-19. Good government has become not just important but a matter of life and death. But the assumption that Western governments have any advantage over the rest of the world is questionable: ask yourself, where would you feel safer today – in Los Angeles and Barcelona or in Singapore and Seoul? The pandemic has exposed the weaknesses of the West, argue bestselling authors John Micklethwait and Adrian Wooldridge, and it is accelerating a shift in the balance of power to the East. While Western democracies have been consumed by in-fights such as the battle over Brexit or partisan showdowns in Congress, countries such as South Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, as well as China, have been stealing a march economically, technologically and, arguably, politically in recent years. Earlier this month, Micklethwait and Wooldridge came to Intelligence Squared to talk about the themes of their new book, 'The Wake Up Call'. What are the lessons to be learned from the pandemic? Should we recognise, as many on the Left maintain, that big government is back for good and should be expanded permanently to deal with other global crises? Or should a balance be struck between collectivism on the one hand, and freedom and entrepreneurialism on the other? And how can the West respond creatively to the pandemic, reverse decades of decline, and ensure that China does not overtake the US in the struggle for global leadership? To find out more about the book click here: Support this show   See for privacy and opt-out information.
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