On May 30, Pres. Donald Trump signed a federal Right to Try Act into law. The new law will allow terminally ill patients to access investigational treatments that have not received final FDA approval.
During the signing ceremony, Trump said, “With the ‘Right to Try’ Law I am signing today, patients with life-threatening illnesses will finally have access to experimental treatments that could improve or even cure their conditions.”
"With the 'Right to Try' Law I am signing today, patients with life threatening illnesses will finally have access to experimental treatments that could improve or even cure their conditions." pic.twitter.com/dZRD57pjf5
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) May 30, 2018
But Trump’s victory speech was a bit tardy. In reality, patients in 40 U.S. states already had access to experimental treatments thanks to state Right to Try laws. The federal Right to Try Act is an example of the feds arriving late to a party. It started nearly five years ago when Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper signed the first state Right to Try bill into law. State action drove this change, and it’s almost certain Congress would have never passed Right to Try if the states hadn’t acted first.
The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act prohibits general