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Senate Confirms Dr. Robert Califf as FDA Commissioner

Statement of American Cancer Society and ACS CAN CEO Karen E. Knudsen and ACS CAN President Lisa Lacasse

February 15, 2022

Washington, D.C.— Today the Senate voted to confirm Robert Califf as the next commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

A statement from Karen E. Knudsen, CEO of American Cancer Society American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) and Lisa Lacasse, president of ACS CAN follows:

“From reviewing and approving innovative therapies, to being given the mandate to regulate the entire tobacco industry, the work of the FDA plays a critical role in the fight against cancer. Given the complex and far-reaching work of the agency on cancer patients and families, a confirmed commissioner is vital to the agency’s work. We look forward to working with Dr. Califf at FDA to:

  • Enhance and elevate the patient voice in drug development and regulatory review within the agency;
  • Modernize and harmonize diagnostic test oversight to provide patients and their providers with confidence in their test results;
  • Ensure that new drugs are developed and reviewed in a way that accounts for the broad diversity of patients with cancer;
  • Prohibit all flavors in all tobacco products to prevent youth from initiating a lifelong, dangerous addiction to tobacco; and
  • Complete final review of all remaining applications of novel tobacco products, including e-cigarettes which evidence has shown to have enticed and addicted a new generation of tobacco users.

“On behalf of families affected by cancer, ACS CAN urges Dr. Califf and FDA to press forward on these critical issues that have impact on a disease that is expected to kill more than 609,000 Americans this year alone. Advancing cancer science into implementation is critical to improving the lives of cancer patients and their families.”

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