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Tag: Recalls

GAO: FDA Can’t Monitor Device Recalls

The Government Accountability Office has weighed in on the failure of the Food and Drug Administration to properly monitor medical device recalls. Its review of the 3,510 recalls between 2005 and 2009 — 40 percent of which were cardiovascular radiological or orthopedic devices — found:

Several gaps in the medical device recall process limited firms’ and FDA’s abilities to ensure that the highest-risk recalls were implemented in an effective and timely manner. For many high-risk recalls, firms faced challenges, such as locating specific devices or device users, and thus could not correct or remove all devices.

“The gist of this report is that the FDA can’t tell if recalls of high-risk devices were carried out successfully because it lacks criteria for assessing device recalls and doesn’t routinely review recall data,” said Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Ia., who along with Sen. Herb Kohl, D-Wis., called for the report. “Recalls are typically voluntary, and patients would be better served if the FDA took a thorough approach to post-market surveillance of medical devices.”

 

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