Christopher Trudeau, an associate professor of law at the UA Little Rock William H. Bowen School of Law and an associate professor in the College of Medicine at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS), has been tapped to serve a four-year term on the Food and Drug Administration’s advisory committee on risk communication.
The Risk Communication Advisory Committee, created in 2007, advises the commissioner of Food and Drugs on ways to effectively communicate with the public about the risks and benefits of FDA-regulated products, allowing people to make more informed decisions about them. The committee also reviews and evaluates the FDA’s and other entities’ research related to the risks and benefits of those products.
“I am truly honored to be the only lawyer on this committee,” said Trudeau, who joined Bowen’s faculty in 2017, teaching RWA I and II. “Clearly communicating risk and regulatory information to the public is vitally important to the government’s transparency efforts, and I am happy to play a role in helping to advance those efforts.”
Health literacy is the degree to which individuals can obtain, communicate, process, and understand the basic health information and services needed to make appropriate health decisions.
Trudeau’s appointment began in early October and runs through September 2022. The 15-member committee meets about four times a year. Its members are selected by the commissioner of Food and Drugs from among experts in fields including health literacy.
Through his appointment, Trudeau hopes to help make more impact in the regulatory world and further health literacy.
“Clarity and legal or regulatory information are not mutually exclusive,” said Trudeau. “It isn’t easy to explain complex information in clear, understandable ways, but the FDA is committed to doing that through this committee.”
Earlier this year, Trudeau was chosen to serve a three-year term on the Roundtable on Health Literacy with the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine. The private, nonprofit institution provides independent, objective analysis and advice and informs public policy related to science, technology and medicine. The 30-member roundtable meets in Washington, D.C. three times a year to develop, implement, and share health literacy practices in the health care community.
Trudeau received his law degree in 2002 from Western Michigan University Thomas M. Cooley Law School and served as a professor there for 13 years before coming to UAMS and UA Little Rock.