Alison Bateman-House, PHD, MPH, MA, is an assistant professor in the Division of Medical Ethics at New York University Langone Medical Center. She specializes in the ethics and history of human subjects research and the ethics and history of public health.
Bateman-House serves as the nonvoting, nonpaid deputy chairperson of the Compassionate Use Advisory Committee (CompAC), an external, expert panel of internationally recognized medical experts, bioethicists, and patient representatives formed by NYU School of Medicine, which advises the Janssen division of Johnson and Johnson about requests for compassionate use of some of its investigational medicines. She also co-chairs the NYU School of Medicine Working Group on Compassionate Use and Pre-Approval Access.
Recent Posts by Alison Bateman-House
While it is true that terminally ill patients may die from their disease before a cure is available, it is not true that the FDA is a gatekeeper standing between these patients and available cures.
There are meaningful steps Congress can take to help desperate patients, such as educating doctors and patients about the FDA’s “expanded access” process and making it more appealing to drug companies, but the right-to-try bills, if passed, will do more harm than good.
Although these laws have created an expectation that terminally ill patients will be able to quickly access potentially life-saving treatments by being exempted from the rules of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), this expectation is, quite simply, false.