Dr Califf Case 64 Summary

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Dr. Califf, 64, is a cardiologist and clinical trial expert from Duke University who has been a consultant to drug companies and ran a research institute that received a majority of its funding from the industry. Such ties have raised questions among some public health groups and some Democrats that he is too close to the industry he is being called on to regulate. Many medical experts dispute that, saying that industry is a principal funder of research in the United States and that working with companies does not present an inherent conflict. Dr. Califf said as much during his two-hour hearing. The session, before the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, was largely friendly, but was punctuated with skeptical questions from Elizabeth Warren, a Democrat from Massachusetts, and Bernie Sanders, the independent from Vermont who is running for the Democratic presidential nomination. “It’s no secret that during your time at Duke you received significant compensation,” from the drug industry, Ms. Warren said. “It naturally raises questions about your relationships with the drug industry.”…show more content…
Califf responded that the central repository of data for any given trial “is the really critical factor here. All of our contracts require that we have access to the database. Seventy percent of the studies we wanted to do we couldn’t because companies were unwilling to grant that right. We had to walk away.” He said that Duke “has graciously agreed” to make public the contracts it has concluded with drug companies. “We publish the papers with input from the companies but they have absolutely no right to change what we say,” he said, and added the he had donated his own consulting fees to nonprofits. Mr. Sanders reiterated that he would vote against Dr. Califf. Even so, Dr. Califf’s candidacy appeared to have broad support, and most observers expect him to be confirmed. A date for the confirmation vote has not been
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