Was clinical and scientific evidence ignored in the case to bring Plan B emergency contraception over the counter? That is one of the questions that Susan F. Wood, Ph.D., research professor at the George Washington University School of Public Health & Health Services in Washington, D.C., will pose when she delivers the annual Oliver C. Schroeder, Jr. Lecture at the Case Western Reserve University School of Law.
The Law-Medicine Center is sponsoring the event, which will be held Wednesday, September 27, at 4:30 p.m. in the Moot Courtroom (A59) at the law school, 11075 East Blvd. Wood's lecture, "The Role of Science in Health Policy Decision-Making: The Case of Emergency Contraception," will focus on the broad regulatory authority of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in assuring the safety and efficacy of regulated products. Wood resigned from the Food and Drug Administration because she felt the FDA ignored clinical and scientific evidence when it chose to overrule the recommendations of professional scientific staff.
Focusing on the particular case of the application to bring Plan B emergency contraception over the counter, Wood will highlight the critical role that science should play in health policy decision-making. She will discuss the negative impact on the health of women and families as well as the impact on overall FDA credibility and its ability to maintain high scientific standards.
"We are delighted to host Susan Wood for this important lecture," said Maxwell J. Mehlman, Arthur E. Petersilge Professor of Law, professor of bioethics, and director of the Law-Medicine Center. "Dr. Wood has dedicated her professional career to promoting legal, economic and health equity for women. She has been directly involved with many policy initiatives and legislative proposals which would advance biomedical research, women's health, family planning and health care reform. Her career serves as a wonderful inspiration for our students."
Dr. Wood is an accomplished researcher and policy-maker with considerable experience in the areas of international health, reproductive health, legislation and health care policy. She served as assistant commissioner for women's health and director of the FDA's Office of Women's Health for five years. She has published a number of research articles in scientific journals, as well as articles on health policy, and received many notable awards for her work. She has worked on Capitol Hill for the Congressional Caucus for Women's Issues. Previously, Wood was a research scientist at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.
The Oliver C. Schroeder, Jr. Scholar-in-Residence was established in 1986 to recognize Schroeder's 38 years of service to Case Western Reserve University School of Law as professor and acting dean. Emeritus Professor Schroeder co-founded the Law-Medicine Center in 1953 and served as its director until his retirement in 1986.
Case Western Reserve University is committed to the free exchange of ideas, reasoned debate and intellectual dialogue. Speakers and scholars with a diversity of opinions and perspectives are invited to the campus to provide the community with important points of view, some of which may be deemed controversial. The views and opinions of those invited to speak on the campus do not necessarily reflect the views of the university administration or any other segment of the university community.