April 19, 2017

Proposed FDA Commissioner Moves Closer to Confirmation

Holland & Knight Healthcare Blog
Michael J. Werner

The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee announced on April 19, 2017, that it will be voting on the nomination of Scott Gottlieb, MD, to be FDA Commissioner next Wednesday. It is likely that the Committee will vote in favor of his nomination, bringing him one step closer to confirmation by the full Senate.

Gottlieb is a practicing physician and resident fellow at the think tank American Enterprise Institute. He served as senior adviser for medical technology, director of medical policy development, and Deputy Commissioner for medical and scientific affairs at the FDA. Earlier, he served as a senior policy adviser to the Administrator at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).

During the Committee hearing discussing his nomination, many Senators noted Dr. Gottlieb’s experience in government and as a physician and argued that background made him highly qualified to be Commissioner. However, some Democrats raised concerns about his relationship with pharmaceutical companies, especially those where he is currently serving on Boards (Dr. Gottlieb has pledged to recuse himself from any matter involving those companies).

If the Committee endorses Gottlieb’s nomination, the full Senate is expected to take up the matter shortly thereafter.

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