Subjects: Health policy
It was no coincidence that 3 days after the Big O’s coronation, the FDA approved the nation’s first stem cell trial. Bush had been throttling the regulatory agency until the day he left town.
Meanwhile, in that euphoric first week the new president practically developed writer’s cramp signing executive orders that closed Guantanamo, banned torture, made government less secretive and restored funding to certain groups supporting abortion.
Everybody expected the Big O would add one more, an order lifting the Bush ban on Federal funding for stem cell research.
The NIH even started drafting guidelines for reviewing stem cell grant proposals to save time once the floodgates opened.
But it didn’t happen, and it still hasn’t happened.
“We were surprised and disappointed it wasn’t in there,” Amy Comstock told the Washington Post. Comstock who is with the Coalition for the Advancement of Medical Research added, “we’re wondering why it’s taking so long.”
Then top lieutenant David Axelrod weaseled to Fox News Sunday that the Big O was “considering” an executive order. Uh-oh!
The man didn’t go and lose a game of HORSE to Rick Warren now, did he?
No, reassured Reid Cherlin.
In an email to the Post, the White House spokesman said “the president has made it clear that increasing stem cell research is a priority for his administration…he’ll be acting soon to reverse restrictions on this critical science.”
“If I were a smart scientist, I would be writing a grant right now,” said Story Landis, head of NIH’s task force on stem cells, who added that a chunk of the NIH’s stimulus money would look real nice in a package directed at his troops.