SILVER SPRING, Md., June 24, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Breast cancer patients and their families will rally together on Tuesday, June 28, at 7:00 am outside of the Federal Drug Administration (FDA). At issue will be the FDA's final hearing to remove the anti-cancer drug Avastin from the approved medication list for treatment of late stage breast cancer, despite the FDA approving it in 2008 for use to treat breast cancer.
Terry Kalley, founder of the Freedom of Access to Medicines (FAMEDS), will lead the protest and then testify at the morning FDA hearing on behalf of his wife. Following the FDA hearing, the group will make its way to Capitol Hill for congressional meetings, and wrap up the day with a media availability at 1:30 pm in 2103 Rayburn House Office Building.
"It is devastating enough to know that death will come early for these women from an incurable disease, but it is outrageous and unbelievably callous of FDA bureaucrats to compound this anguish," Kalley said. "All we are asking for is for the federal government to stay out of our medical lives and allow my wife to continue taking this drug that is prolonging her life and the lives of many others."
At the June 28 hearing, the FDA will likely reverse its previous decision to allow Avastin to be used by breast cancer patients. The FDA will likely cite dangerous side effects, but as Kalley pointed out, "For many breast cancer patients, including my wife, the most dangerous risk is the unavailability of Avastin."
Kalley warned that when government begins to pick winners and losers, a slippery slope towards rationing medications can happen. "Today, it's Avastin for metastatic breast cancer, tomorrow it could be the drug that your loved one needs to stay alive," he said.
He concluded with a call to action, saying "Attend our rally on the 28th, sign our online petition, and write your federal representatives and senat