Are right-to-try laws a last hope for dying patients — or a false hope?

Where’s Jordan?” asked Vice President Pence as he walked into the White House meeting of terminally ill patients and their families. All eyes shifted, and Pence made a beeline for a 7-year-old boy from Indianapolis with a broad grin.

Back home, when Pence was Indiana’s governor, Jordan McLinn and his battle with Duchenne muscular dystrophy had helped inspire passage of a state “right-to-try” law intended to give the desperately ill access to medications not yet approved by the Food and Drug Administration. Fast-forward to Washington, where Pence is now in a position to encourage national right-to-try legislation.

“We’re going to get this done,” he assured Jordan’s mother, Laura McLinn, and the other families gathered last month.

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