Prominent Anti-Choice, Anti-Family Planning Activist Nominated for key post in the FDA.
Senior associate FDA commissioner and friend of Bush Linda Arey Skladeny has selected Dr. W. David Hager, a prominent anti-choice Ob-GYN, to chair the Reproductive Health Drugs Advisory Committee. The Committee is influential in many decisions regarding contraceptives and women,s health. In 1996, the committee's favorable recommendation was instrumental in FDA approval of mifepristone, also known as RU-486. Hager is a member of the Christian Medical Association, and represented the group in a recent campaign calling for the FDA to revoke their approval of mifepristone. Hager refuses to prescribe contraceptives to unmarried women, recommends reading the Bible to cure Pre-Menstrual Syndrome, opposes emergency contraception, and actively promotes abstinence-only education
His nomination is opposed by CARAL, NARAL, Planned Parenthood, the National Organization of Women, the Feminist Majority Foundation, Senator Barbara Boxer, the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, and many others.
Send a letter to Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thompson, Deputy FDA Commissioner Lester Crawford, Jr., or President George W. Bush expressing your opposition to Hager's nomination. We strongly urge you to mail or fax a letter and/or make phone calls as they have the most impact. If this is not feasible, an email option is provided below.
Secretary Tommy Thompson
Department of Health and Human Services
200 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20201
Toll Free: 1-877-696-6775
Web Site: http://www.dhhs.gov
Deputy Commissioner Lester Crawford, Jr.
Food & Drug Administration
5600 Fishers Ln., Mail Stop HF-1
Rockville MD 20857
Web Site: http://www.fda.gov/
President George W. Bush
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
Web Site: http://www.whitehouse.gov/
Sample Message: *
I oppose the nomination of anti-choice physician W. David Hager to the FDA Reproductive Health Drugs Advisory Committee!
According to recent press reports, your administration is strongly considering appointing ob-gyn Dr. W. David Hager to the Food and Drug Administration's reconstituted Advisory Committee for Reproductive Health Drugs. Dr. Hager's alarming anti-choice and anti-family planning views make him highly inappropriate for this key position. I am writing to oppose Dr. Hager's appointment and ask that you make medical accuracy and women's health paramount in the appointment of FDA Reproductive Health committee members.
Dr. Hager will not perform abortions, nor prescribe mifepristone (RU 486), and will not provide intra-uterine devices (IUDs), a widely accepted form of contraception. In August, Dr. Hager helped the Christian Medical Association write its "citizen's petition" that called for the FDA to reverse its approval of mifepristone and pull it off the market, ignoring over a decade of international research that has established the safety and efficacy of this early abortion option. Time magazine cited two sources familiar with his private practice as saying that Dr. Hager has refused to prescribe contraceptives to unmarried women.
Advisory panels conduct studies and offer influential recommendations to the FDA. The Reproductive Health committee will soon address issues such as hormone-replacement therapy for menopausal women, a controversy that some conservative activists have tried to use to raise doubts about the safety of birth control pills. In addition, if appointed, Dr. Hager would be a member of the committee that could review the petition to pull mifepristone off the market - the petition that he helped author. Dr. Hager's pending appointment would be an unfortunate prioritization of ideology over accurate science and medical research. I ask that you put the health and well-being of women first and reconsider your support for Dr. Hager's appointment.
* Letter courtesy of NARAL