HHS reclaims authority to investigate FDA employees

WASHINGTON According to a letter from House lawmakers, the department of Health and Human Services is reclaiming the authority to investigate potential ethical and criminal violations among Food and Drug Administration employees.

HHS is revoking a letter of understanding that gave the FDA’s Office of Internal Affairs the jurisdiction to investigate possible violations, including conflicts of interest, by FDA employees. HHS’ Office of Inspector General will now handle the investigations, as stated in a letter from House Energy and Commerce Committee lawmakers.

The committee, which has been investigating ethics violations at HHS and the FDA, approved of the decision. Allowing FDA employees to investigate other agency employees was “improper and a violation of the intent of the inspector general statutory purpose,” the letter to HHS inspector general Daniel Levinson said.

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