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Shawn M. Schmitt

Executive Editor

Miami, FL
Executive Editor Shawn M. Schmitt lives and works in Miami. For more than two decades he has written and edited for various high-profile media outlets, including The New Republic and London's Independent Television News (ITN). Since 2005 he has reported on medical device quality control, compliance and post-market issues. A spirited, creative journalist, Shawn reported from the White House Rose Garden for Counseling Today, met with medical device experts in Costa Rica for Medtech Insight, traveled the US to get the scoop on Medicare funding for DecisionHealth, and wrote about the proliferation of nuclear weapons for National Journal's Global Security Newswire. Shawn holds a Master of Arts in Communication: Journalism and Public Affairs from American University in Washington, D.C. (2004), and a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Communications from Point Park University in Pittsburgh (1997).
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Latest From Shawn M. Schmitt

Coronavirus: All FDA Inspections Of Chinese Manufacturing Facilities Come To Screeching Halt

The US agency has suspended all routine surveillance inspections in China through the end of March because of coronavirus fears, commissioner Stephen Hahn announced late on 14 February. Despite expecting medical product shortages, Hahn said the agency is being proactive: “We are not waiting for drug and device manufacturers to report shortages to us” before acting. The timing of Hahn’s statement – at 6 p.m. EST on a Friday, at the beginning of a three-day US holiday weekend – suggests he isn’t particularly excited to share the information.

FDA Enforcement

FDA Wants $18M To Update Outmoded Device Program IT Systems

The US agency says its medical device program is in desperate need of an information technology upgrade, noting that its outdated IT systems, tools and approaches could leave it flat-footed when dealing with cybersecurity threats and ever-evolving medtech. That’s why the FDA is asking Congress for $18m to tackle the IT sore spot.

FDA Policy

FDA Blames ‘Super Office’ Reorg For Falling Short On 2019 Review-Time Goals For Recalls, High-Risk Adverse Events

The US agency says it missed critical goals for evaluating product recalls and so-called Code Blue Medical Device Reports (MDRs) in fiscal year 2019 – and it’s pinning the blame squarely on a massive reorganization of its device center. This isn’t the first time the FDA has pointed to the “super office” shakeup as a disruptor.

FDA Quality

Warning Letter Nosedive: FDA Makes History (Yet Again) By Sending Only 21 Of The Missives To Device Firms In 2019

A mere 21 quality-related warning letters were issued to device makers last year, the US agency tells Medtech Insight. It’s the third year in a row that the FDA has given out a record-low number of letters. In fact, 2019’s count of 21 represents a whopping 83% decrease from just five years ago, when 121 letters were sent to companies.

FDA Device Warning Letters

US Regulatory Roundup, January 2020: Recalled Surgical Gowns; Coronavirus News; FDA Inspection Tips; And More

News that device giant Cardinal Health recalled millions of potentially unsafe, unsterile surgical gowns – and a message out of the US FDA for customers to “immediately discontinue” using the gowns – was of most interest to our online readers last month. Meanwhile, the FDA’s plans to hasten emergency-use approvals of coronavirus test kits and a set of 10 tips for dealing with agency investigators also garnered significant attention. Here are January’s 10 most popular US policy and regulation stories from Medtech Insight.

Regulation Policy

Chinese Device Exports, Supply Chains Holding Up In The Face Of Coronavirus – For Now

Exports of components and finished medical devices coming from coronavirus-stricken China will continue to flow to the US and other countries for now, but there could be trouble soon if government quarantines and international travel bans remain in place, an industry expert in Shanghai tells Medtech Insight.

China Manufacturing
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