FDA Warns California Officials About Reimporting Drugs From Canada
The FDA last week sent a letter to California officials warning them that state, county or city efforts to reimport U.S.-made prescription drugs from Canada would "nearly always" be in violation of federal law, the Wall Street Journal reports. In response to a letter from Attorney General Bill Lockyer (D) regarding drug reimportation, the letter from the FDA stated that "programs that cause illegal shipments" are also illegal and that federal laws pre-empt any state, county or city efforts to legalize the importation of prescription drugs. "We want to send a very strong message, which is that safety is absolutely crucial, and they need to be aware that these activities are inherently risky," Peter Pitts, associate FDA commissioner for external relations, said (Matthews, Wall Street Journal, 8/27). "Many drugs obtained from foreign sources that purport and appear to be the same as U.S.-approved prescription drugs have been of unknown quality," William Hubbard, the FDA's associate commissioner for policy and planning, wrote (Bloomberg/Los Angeles Times, 8/28).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.