Have you ever been so worried about the side effects of a medical product that you’ve filed an adversity report with the Food and Drug Administration’s MedWatch program? If not, don’t worry, because you’re not alone. For many, the thought never even crosses their minds, and some think the process of filing an adversity report can be too daunting to even attempt.
The FDA understands these concerns and is attempting to address them with the introduction of a new MedWatch form that seeks to streamline the reporting process. For 20 years, patients have been able to report adversity. The FDA itself notes, though, that more of an effort has always been placed on having medical professionals file reports as opposed to patients.
But the times are changing, and so are our habits. People are researching their maladies online before even speaking with a doctor, and the FDA wants the input of anyone worried about a side effect or medical condition. The organization is thus ratcheting up efforts to spread awareness of the new, far less technical form.
It’s important to use this mechanism so that safety problems can come to the attention of the proper authorities as early as possible. What might be a minor reaction to one person could be life threatening to another, and if enough reports are filed, the issue would hopefully get corrected before lives are endangered. Visit the MedWatch website to view the new form and fill it out if need be.