Author: Dr. Nigel SB Rawson, Ph.D.
In a recent article published in the journal Open Medicine (“How safe are new drugs? Market withdrawal of drugs approved in Canada between 1990 and 2009”), author Joel Lexchin examined the issue of drug safety in Canada finding that 22 drugs had been withdrawn from the Canadian market for safety reasons between 1990 and 2009. Lexchin suggested that Health Canada is too quick to approve new drugs, and raised doubts about the rigour of the drug safety evaluation and surveillance system in Canada. This paper re-examines the evidence on which Lexchin’s conclusions are based, as well as other relevant empirical evidence and challenges Lexchin’s conclusions.