We blogged a while back about the Food and Drug Administration investigating
the safety of a number of over-the-counter pediatric medicines, namely
Children’s Tylenol, Motrin, Benadryl, and Zyrtec. The drugs are
manufactured by McNeil Consumer Healthcare, a division of Johnson &
Johnson. The company issued a voluntary recall of some 43 over-the-counter
Unfortunately, Johnson & Johnson’s cooperation seems to have
stopped at the voluntary recall, and the company’s credibility has
been called into question. A New York Times article reports that Johnson
& Johnson has not been helpful and has in fact been a hindrance in
a congressional investigation of the recall.
Representative Edolphus Towns, the chairman of the House Committee on Oversight
and Government Reform, says Johnson & Johnson provided inaccurate
information and forced delays. For example, Johnson & Johnson claimed
the recall affected 6 million bottles of pediatric medicines when in fact
it involved more than 136 million bottles, a figure the company had provided
to the FDA.
Johnson & Johnson contends it has fully cooperated with the investigation
and has not tried to mislead anyone. It says it handed over some 20,000
pages of documentation to the congressional committee and has been available
It will be interesting to see how the story plays out.