While historically, the development of new technologies to improve patients’ lives has relied upon experts’ opinions rather than asking patients and families directly what they consider important, this may be about to change. Patients and their care partners are becoming intimately involved in decisions concerning all aspects of their health care.

To that end, the FDA announced its first-ever Patient Engagement Advisory Committee (PEAC). PEAC will provide advice to the FDA Commissioner on a range of complex issues relating to medical devices, their regulation, and use by patients. PEAC represents a new opportunity to foster patient partnerships with FDA, and complements other FDA efforts to bring the patient into the medical device regulatory process.