Philanthropist Bill Gates said in an interview with Bloomberg Television that the US Food and Drug Administration has lost credibility during the coronavirus pandemic.
“We saw with the completely bungled plasma statements that when you start pressuring people to say optimistic things, they go completely off the rails. The FDA lost a lot of credibility there,” Gates told Bloomberg’s Erik Schatzker.
“Historically, just like the CDC was viewed as the best in the world, the FDA had that same reputation as a top-notch regulator,” Gates said. “But there’s been some cracks with some of the things they’ve said at the commissioner level.”
In a Stat interview published Monday, Gates criticized FDA Commissioner Dr. Stephen Hahn’s mischaracterization of data about convalescent plasma as a Covid-19 treatment. Hahn has previously acknowledged his misstatement and said criticism of his remarks was “entirely justified.”
On Bloomberg Television, Gates also spoke about his frustration with the lack of US funding for vaccinations in the developing world.
“The inequity of this — whether it’s between citizens in the country, blue collar versus white collar, blacks experiencing a higher sickness rate than others — poor countries can’t borrow money and spend money like the U.S. and other rich countries have,” Gates said. “Almost every dimension of inequity has been accentuated here.”