Chloe Tenn, The Scientist: November 12, 2021
President Joe Biden announced today (November 12) his nomination of Robert Califf for the role of commissioner of the US Food and Drug Administration. Califf previously helmed the FDA for the Obama administration in 2016, but many of his plans were left unfinished during his 10-month tenure, reports STAT. His nomination will need to be confirmed by the Senate before he can assume the position again.
While commissioner, Califf made efforts toward reforming medical digital data systems and regulating tobacco products like e-cigarettes, according to STAT. Some of his initiatives, such as creating a collaborative organization to collect and distribute medical data nationally and improving the FDA hiring system, did not take effect.
After leaving the FDA commissioner position in 2017, Califf joined Verily, a biotechnology company with the same parent company as Google. There he led efforts to streamline and modernize clinical trials and medical data collection. He was also a consultant for pharmaceutical companies like Merck, Biogen, and Genentech, reports The New York Times.
Diana Zuckerman, the president of the nonprofit National Center for Health Research, tells the Times that “It is surprising that the White House has seemed really tone-deaf on conflicts of interest and very close ties to the industry.”
To read the entire article, click here.