FDA Will Now Allow Blood Donations From Gay, Bisexual Men and Transgender Women

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced on Thursday that it will be ending a longstanding blood donation policy that discriminates against gay and bisexual men, as well as some transgender women. Restrictions on those groups have been in place for decades. In 1985, the FDA mandated an “indefinite deferral” of gay and bisexual men giving blood, citing the higher prevalence of HIV… Source Source / Read More: FDA Will Now Allow Blood Donations From Gay, Bisexual Men and Transgender Women

FDA Rules That Retail Pharmacies Can Offer Abortion Medication

The federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) finalized a rule on Tuesday that will allow qualifying pharmacies to offer abortion medication to patients. The rule makes such medication available by prescription at pharmacies across the country, including large chain stores and mail-order companies. However, state rules on abortion medication will still apply — and in about half the states… Source Source / Read More: FDA Rules That Retail Pharmacies Can Offer Abortion Medication

Report: Thousands of Federal Officials Have Owned Stock in Companies They Govern

Thousands of federal officials in the executive branch over the last two presidential administrations have disclosed trading stocks in companies that their agencies oversee, representing thousands of potential conflicts of interest, a new investigation finds. The Wall Street Journal analyzed over 31,000 financial disclosure forms dated between 2016 and 2021, which included information on over 315,000 trades in stocks, bonds and funds by officials and their immediate families. These documents showed that over 2,600 senior officials across 50 federal agencies have disclosed owning stock in companies that have lobbied the agency that they work in. This represents more than one…

Biden Announces Hearing Aids Will Soon Be Able to Be Sold Over the Counter

Millions of Americans who need hearing aids will be able to purchase them over the counter as soon as this fall under a new Food and Drug Administration (FDA) rule that will likely also lower costs, the Biden administration has announced. The FDA finalized a rule on Tuesday that would create a new over-the-counter category for hearing aids, which the agency says will largely benefit those who experience mild to moderate hearing impairment. As soon as mid-October, those with hearing loss will be able to purchase aids online or in-store without a prescription or an appointment with a medical professional.…

FDA Is Considering Making Birth Control Pills Available Over the Counter

The federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is set to consider whether multiple companies’ versions of oral birth control medication should be made available to consumers over the counter, removing requirements to access such pills through a prescription only. Paris-based HRA Pharma submitted a request to the FDA on Monday to authorize over-the-counter use of its daily oral birth control pill. Cadence Health, another birth control pill manufacturer whose product is in wide use, has reportedly been in “close dialogue” with the agency about changing its requirements away from prescription-only to over the counter, with plans to submit an application…

Progressives Say Abbott’s “Near Monopoly” Laid Groundwork for Baby Food Shortage

In a push to urge President Joe Biden to take executive action to ease the nationwide baby food shortage, progressive lawmakers are saying that manufacturer Abbott Nutrition should face particular scrutiny for its role in causing the problem. Representatives Jamaal Bowman (D-New York), Ayanna Pressley (D-Massachusetts), Pramila Jayapal (D-Washington) and Grace Meng (D-New York) sent a letter to Biden urging him to “do everything within your executive authority, across all federal agencies,” to ease the shortage. They say that the president can use the Defense Production Act and powers given to him through the COVID-19 emergency declaration to ease what…

COVID Vaccines for Kids Under 5 Could be Available in June, FDA Official Says

An official with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has said that coronavirus vaccines for children under the age of 5 will be considered — and likely approved — as soon as June. Peter Marks, director of the FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, suggested that the vaccines will be available shortly in an interview published on Friday in The Washington Post. So far, only Moderna has submitted a request for emergency use authorization of its version of the COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 6 months to 4 years old. But Pfizer and BioNTech have said that they will…

FDA Expected to Authorize COVID Booster Shots for 12- to 15-Year-Olds

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) expects to authorize booster shots for children ages 12-15 early next week, sources within the agency say. Pfizer/BioNTech booster shots for young teenagers were supposed to be authorized this week, but the authorization was delayed due to holiday-related scheduling conflicts within the FDA. If the booster shots are authorized by the FDA, the agency will share the data that led to the authorization with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Boosters can be administered to children ages 12-15 within days of the final authorization by CDC director Rochelle Walensky. Walensky has indicated…