The FDA has named Kathleen Uhl, M.D., as the new director of its Office of Women's Health (OWH).
Uhl, a captain in the U.S. Public Health Service, most recently served as a supervisory medical officer in the FDA's Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER) and has been with the agency since 1998.
Her predecessor, Susan Wood, quit August 31 after the agency delayed its decision whether to permit OTC sales of Barr's Plan B emergency contraceptive, despite a Sept. 1 deadline set by former commissioner Lester Crawford. Wood maintained that the delay was politically motivated, although in a subsequent Associated Press interview she said she wasn't sure on whose authority the decision was made.
A second FDA staff member who resigned in protest of the agency's handling of Plan B, Frank Davidoff, said he thinks the decision was made on the basis of political pressure rather than science.
Crawford's resignation came in late September, prior to Davidoff's.
Uhl will take office next month, relieving Theresa Toigo, head of the FDA's Office of Special Health Issues, who had been acting OWH director.