- Women & the Opioid Epidemic: What Works and What Doesn’t
By Maggie Gorini
The opioid crisis is big news these days, and with good reason. In 2017 alone, there were 70,237 drug overdose deaths, two-thirds of which involved opioids.i Accidental drug overdose is the leading cause of death in the U.S. among people under age 50.ii We need policymakers, insurers, voters, and practitioners to come together in a multi-pronged approach to prevent ...
- Vyleesi: Another Attempt to Profit from Women’s Health
By Maggie Gorini
In June, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved bremelanotide (brand name Vyleesi) to treat a lack of sexual desire in premenopausal women.1 The NWHN advocated against the drug’s approval, and spoke in opposition when the approval announcement was made. Here’s why.
Bremelanotide is designed to treat “hypoactive sexual desire disorder” on an “as-needed” basis. A woman takes it about 45 minutes before she ...
- The Reproductive Justice Movement: A Model for a More Inclusive Movement to Improve End-of-Life Options
By Ninia Beahr
I am a member—and critic—of the right-to-die movement, which seeks to expand access to assisted dying for people facing incurable, unbearable suffering. Much of my background is in abortion activism. In the 1960s and early 1970s, the mainstream pro-choice movement was led by middle-class White women and focused on the single issue of ...
- An Open Letter to FDA’s New Commissioner
By: Cynthia Pearson
I wish you well. Honestly, I do. You’ve got a big job with, well, challenging bosses. But you know what? We’re your bosses, too. The public pays for more than half of the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) budget each year, which entitles us to have a say in the agency’s operations. ...
- A New Treatment for Postpartum Depression: Boon or Bane?
By Sophie Krensky and Olivia Shannon
Last November, the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Reproductive Health Drugs Advisory Committee voted overwhelmingly in favor of brexanolone, a first-of-its-kind treatment for postpartum depression (PPD). We question whether brexanolone will help mothers or if it’s a misdirected silver bullet for a larger, more insidious problem: lack of support ...
- Brightness Among the Clouds: Positive Women’s Health Efforts at the FDA
By Eliana Kosova
In our current political climate, each day brings new attacks on reproductive health. Between the Trump-Pence Administration’s attacks on access to birth control and Congress’s continual efforts to curtail abortion care, we are in an uphill battle when it comes to reproductive freedom. When Scott Gottlieb was tapped as Commissioner of the Food ...
- The Long Road to Long-term Treatment: Evaluating the State of Uterine Fibroids Medication
By Eliana Kosova
For some, finding the right medication to treat their medical condition is as simple as consulting a doctor and picking up a prescription. For many others, it’s a waiting game. Unfortunately, for those with uterine fibroids, the situation is more often the latter than the former.
Although anywhere from 20 to 80 percent of ...
- Addyi Update
By Negar Esfandiari and Kara Cotto
In 2015, Valeant, a pharmaceutical giant known for price gouging and shady business practices paid $1 billion in cash for a flawed sexual enhancement drug marketed to women with so-called “acquired generalized hypoactive sexual desire disorder.” The drug, flibanserin, is sold under the name “Addyi,” and is described as the female version of Viagra. Despite the huge amounts of money involved, the drug’s a bust. It’s crucial for women to understand the small pink pill’s dangerous ...
- Keep Passing on the Pink Pill: DON’T “Get Addyi Now”!
By Abby Miller and Susan K. Flinn
What do you do when your product isn’t popular and sales have slumped? Gin up an advertising campaign to convince consumers that they absolutely have to have what you’re selling. Flibanserin (brand name “Addyi”) is the first drug approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat so-called “Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder” ...