Los Angeles City Council Member Calls for City Program To Reimport Prescription Drugs
Los Angeles City Council member Dennis Zine on Monday said that he plans to introduce a measure under which the city would establish a program to reimport prescription drugs from Canada, the Los Angeles Times reports. Zine said that reimportation could save the city millions of dollars in prescription drug costs. Under the measure, Los Angeles would reimport medications for city employees in workers' compensation cases and residents enrolled in city health care programs. Zine also said that Los Angeles should allow seniors to purchase reimported prescription drugs from the city at a discount. "Maybe this will turn the pharmaceutical industry around and show them that we are going to fight the gouging of the public in the United States," Zine said. However, the FDA has raised safety concerns about such programs. "Trading savings for safety is just not acceptable," FDA Associate Commissioner Peter Pitts said. Merrill Jacobs, deputy vice president for PhRMA, added, "It's against the federal law. There is no way safety can be guaranteed." Jacobs said that cities should provide residents with information on available prescription drug discount programs, rather than establish reimportation programs, to help reduce medication costs for residents (McGreevy, Los Angeles Times, 2/10).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.