Chair Krishnamoorthi and Rep. Porter Request Documents Regarding Potential Conflicts of Interest in Organ Transplant Industry Study
Washington, D.C. (September 17, 2021)— Today, Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi,
Chairman of the Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy, and Rep. Katie Porter, Member of the Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy, sent a letter to
Dr. Victor J. Dzau, President of the National Academy of Medicine, expressing concern about potential financial conflicts of interest among members of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) conducting a study on the organ transplant industry.
“We fully support NASEM’s study, which will be critical to ensuring our organ transplant system is efficient and equitable,” the Members wrote. “However, we are concerned by prior reports of financial conflicts of interest among NASEM committee members conducting important work on other subjects.”
In December 2019, Congress authorized $1.5 million in funding for NASEM to “examine and recommend improvements to research, policies, and activities related to organ donation and transplantation.”
On August 12, 2021, Kaiser Health News reported that NASEM failed to disclose the financial conflicts of committee members who contributed to its February 2021 report on reducing waste in pharmaceutical supply chains. The report also did not disclose that NASEM itself has received at least $10 million from major drug makers since 2015, including from companies with financial interests in the outcome of NASEM’s work on reducing waste in pharmaceutical supply chains.
The Subcommittee is investigating reports of poor performance, waste, and mismanagement across the organ transplant industry in the United States. Today’s letter explains that the objectivity of NASEM’s report is important to these efforts.
“Improvements to the system will literally save and vastly improve the lives of patients waiting for organ transplants. It is imperative that recommendations for the organ transplant system be made with that goal in mind, and without interference from those with pecuniary interests in the outcome of NASEM’s work,” added the Members.
To assist in their investigation, the Members requested that documents and information regarding NASEM, its committee members, and their potential financial ties to the organ procurement industry be provided by October 1, 2021.
Click here to read the letter to Dr. Dzau, President of the National Academy of Medicine.