The National Association of Chain Drug Stores has called on Senate leaders to prevent language allowing the personal importation of prescription drugs from becoming part of food safety legislation.


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Senate urged to prevent prescription reimportation

July 30th, 2010

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – The National Association of Chain Drug Stores has called on Senate leaders to prevent language allowing the personal importation of prescription drugs from becoming part of food safety legislation.

NACDS, which on Thursday sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.) and Sen. Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.), said the legislation may reach the Senate floor for consideration in the coming days.

"As the Congress prepares to recess for the August work period, the National Association
of Chain Stores urges senators to resist legislation that would allow for reimportation of prescription drugs," stated the letter, which was signed by NACDS president and chief executive officer Steve Anderson. "We understand the Senate may soon consider food
safety legislation, which pertains to the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act and therefore could
attract a drug reimportation amendment. In the past, there have been efforts to amend
such measures with language to permit reimportation."

With the upcoming Congressional district work period and tight legislative schedules, NACDS expressed concern in the letter about inserting language that could bode negatively for the safety of patients.

"NACDS strongly supports policies to help make prescription drugs more affordable. However, we do not believe consumer safety can be ensured in a system that allows for the personal reimportation of prescription drugs," the letter said. "In addition to legitimate concerns about the safety and effectiveness of these products, individuals who obtain medications through personal importation schemes do not have a licensed pharmacist available to consult with them about using the medications safely and effectively."

In December, NACDS commended the Senate for preventing the passage of a proposed prescription drug reimportation amendment as part of health care legislation.

"We applaud the efforts of Congress to expand access to prescription medication and are committed to working with you to advance policies that expand consumer access to safe, affordable and effective prescription drugs," the association said in the letter sent Thursday. "However, reimportation is not the right way to go about achieving this worthy goal."

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