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Tags: florida | fda | prescription drugs | canada | ron desantis

Florida Sues FDA for Allegedly Delaying Approval of Imported Canadian Drugs

Florida Sues FDA for Allegedly Delaying Approval of Imported Canadian Drugs
Drug capsules are seen on the production line at the plant of French multinational pharmaceutical company Pierre Fabre, in Gien, France. (Gerard Julien/AFP via Getty Images)

By    |   Wednesday, 31 August 2022 06:40 PM EDT

Florida has filed a lawsuit against the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), amid accusations of the agency unlawfully delaying approval of a program that would allow the state to import prescription drugs from Canada, as a means of lowering medication costs for residents.

In his Wednesday announcement, Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican, claimed the FDA violated federal law by dragging out approval of the Canadian Prescription Drug Importation Program, in which he first sought approval in November 2020.

The 42-page lawsuit also asserts the FDA violated the Administrative Procedure Act, which governs how federal agencies operate, along with Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) laws.

"It's our view that we've waited long enough," said DeSantis, while holding court for the media in Lakeland. 

"The clock's been ticking. We have a right to know what the FDA has been doing the last two years to ensure [whether] they are putting politics over patients [or] putting the interests of Big Pharma over the interests of average Floridians," added DeSantis.

Back in the spring, the FDA reportedly submitted an update on the approval process, saying it had met with Florida officials and was "working to implement a statutory pathway" for Canadian drug imports.

Prescription drug costs have been a hot-button political issue during recent election cycles. 

In 2020, former President Trump signed an executive order to import some prescription drugs from Canada, but the FDA later blocked bulk exports coming from the northern border, under the guise of  potential shortages arising.

One year later (July 2021), President Joe Biden issued an executive order directing the FDA to work with states on streamlining drug approvals.

And this summer, the Inflation Reduction Act — passed both in the House and Senate chambers — will reportedly enable Medicare to negotiate the price of drugs and cap out-of-pocket costs for medications at $2,000, starting in 2025.

Regarding Florida, in 2019, Governor DeSantis signed a law authorizing the implementation of the Canadian Prescription Drug Importation Program.

At the time, it made Florida the first state to seek authorization from the FDA to import medications from Canada, where some prescription drugs can be purchased at an 80% discount, compared to the U.S.

Several other states followed Florida's lead with the law, including New Mexico and Colorado.

The first phase of Florida's program reportedly will involve importing drugs used to treat HIV, diabetes, hepatitis C, and mental illness. 

The governor's office estimates that Floridians will save $150 million annually under the program.

According to Consumer Affairs, Florida has the highest concentration of 65-and-over residents, at 21%.

The state also ranks second overall with residents at least 65 years old (4.2 million), trailing only California (5.4 million).

© 2022 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


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Florida has filed a lawsuit against the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), amid accusations of the agency unlawfully delaying approval of a program that would allow the state to import prescription drugs from Canada, as a means of lowering medication costs for residents.
florida, fda, prescription drugs, canada, ron desantis
446
2022-40-31
Wednesday, 31 August 2022 06:40 PM
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