TGA to get its act together – and it’s about time

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Over the past year I’ve managed to take a couple of swipes at our Therapeutic Goods Administration, notably here and here.

The main complaint has been that the TGA seems to have become simply a register of products with some loose connection to the word ‘health’. Their emphasis appears to have been to avoid harm – at least physical harm. But there has been little attempt to assess efficacy of the products, and so the register is full of alternative medicine (or, as commonly known, medicine that has not been shown to work, or worse, been shown to not work.)

In this article, we see a glimmer of hope that the TGA will start providing some real value to the community which it serves – broadening its role to include the evaluation of efficacy of products. The TGA’s national manager has admitted that the sector faced a ‘fragility of trust’, because of the perceived promotion of remedies with supporting evidence. Fragility? Try ‘already broken’.

Predictably, as spokesman for the hilariously-named ‘Australian Self-Medication Industry (who needs a medical education anyway?) thinks any change unnecessary, believing there has been an ‘over-emphasis on risk’ and that there needed to be ‘a focus on benefits, such as helping consumers remain active’. I think he means ‘active and poor’.

Let’s see what happens.

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One thought on “TGA to get its act together – and it’s about time

    Meet my new Friends « rationalbrain said:
    March 25, 2012 at 8:36 pm

    […] The executive of the group consists of some of the luminaries of the movement against junk medicine, including Professors John Dwyer and Rob Morrison. Interestingly, also on the executive as CEO is Loretta Marron, of whom I’ve written before, (here, here and here). Between them, John and Loretta have pestered the TGA to clean up its act, and must take some of the responsibility as the organisation moves to do just that. […]

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