Bucks County Congressman Wants To Provide More Options For Terminally Ill Patients

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Should people who are terminally ill be allowed to take medicine that hasn’t been approved for a mass market? A Bucks County congressman believes the answer is ‘yes’ — and wants it written into law.

They don’t have time to wade through red tape, argues Republican Brian Fitzpatrick.

“This right to try legislation simply establishes the freedom for patients and their doctors to try therapies where the benefits far outweigh the risks,” he said.

Fitzpatrick says it would open experimental treatments to patients who’ve exhausted other options, and for whom clinical trials are out of reach.

“It gives them the option of trying to save their life,” he said.

A similar bill passed unanimously in the senate. But not all are sold, including north Jersey congressman Frank Pallone.

“The legislation being considered could expose seriously ill patients to greater harm instead of the greater access they’re looking for,” he said.

The Democrat echoes concerns from the head of the FDA that drugs in early testing can turn out to be quite dangerous.

Fitzpatrick’s bill would keep the feds from interfering with ‘right to try’ laws in effect in several dozen states. Our area does not have them.

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