House passes “right to try” bill

The U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 5247, the controversial “right to try” bill, on Wednesday by a vote of 267-149 after failing in the House last week. The bill would give terminally ill patients the right to seek drug treatments that remain in clinical trials and have passed phase one of the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) approval process, but they have not been fully approved by the FDA. The bill now needs approval from the Senate before it would become a federal law.

Right-to-try laws exist in 38 states, including South Dakota. Opponents of the bill say it would strip protections offered by the CDC approval process and will open the door for patients to use potentially harmful drugs.