Margaret Anderson
Executive Director, FasterCures
Bioscience and Health and Medical Research and Regulation and Science
Margaret Anderson is executive director of FasterCures/The Center for Accelerating Medical Solutions, defining the organization's strategic priorities and positions on key issues, developing its programmatic portfolio, and managing its operations. Prior to her appointment as executive director, she was FasterCures' chief operating officer for five years.
read bio

Hamburg leaves strong legacy of progress on many fronts

By: Margaret Anderson
February 05, 2015

In her nearly six years at the helm of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Commissioner Margaret Hamburg has driven tremendous advances in the way the agency brings patients into the regulatory process, and ensures that their needs and input factor into decision making. 

The long-time public health official, champion of patients and friend of FasterCures will be stepping down next month. 

tumblr inline njbkpy7Xmt1rgq43d

From the very beginning of her career, Hamburg has understood the importance of listening to individuals living with disease, and factoring their perspectives and experience into policy decisions. She was on the frontlines of the HIV/AIDS crisis and saw first-hand how patients can improve the research and development system. “It wasn’t that they were simply advocates. It was that they really were contributors and that they really brought a very sophisticated understanding,” said Hamburg in Back to Basics: HIV/AIDS Advocacy as a Model for Catalyzing Change, a report co-authored by FasterCures and HCM Strategists.

Under Hamburg’s leadership, the FDA has evolved into a more transparent, communicative agency that brings external stakeholders to the table earlier and more often. Among her many contributions are the launch of the FDA’s Advancing Regulatory Science initiative in 2010 (which developed better tools and standards for assessing safety and efficacy), the increased communication and collaboration between FDA and NIH, the launch of the PDUFA V-initiated Patient-Focused Drug Development Initiative (which invites patients to share their feedback on benefits and risks with the FDA), and multiple measures to speed the development and review of new drugs and devices.

Last year the FDA approved 41 new therapies, the most in almost 20 years, a testament to the impact of these efforts. 

FasterCures congratulates Dr. Hamburg for her myriad contributions and tireless service, and looks forward to continuing to partner with the many strong leaders still within the agency who are working hard to propel medical progress forward in partnership with patients.


  • Margaret Hamburg has indeed modernized the FDA. She will be sorely missed. We can only hope that the changes initiated by her have been institutionalized. The rise in the approvals of new therapies is to be applauded. Very seldom do we find such impactful people attracted to government.

    Posted by Ross DeVol, 02/06/2015 (4 years ago)

Post your comment