Pharmacy organizations raise concerns about Florida’s drug importation program

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

January 17, 2024

WASHINGTON – Our pharmacy organizations are deeply concerned about FDA’s recent authorization of a state drug importation program, which could open the door for harmful and counterfeit drugs to enter our nation’s drug supply, with no evidence that this will result in cost savings for our patients.

FDA recently authorized Florida’s Agency for Health Care Administration to import certain drugs under specific conditions. Under current law, FDA can only authorize importation if the program will significantly reduce the cost to the American consumer without imposing additional risk to public health and safety. FDA’s announcement did not contain any data or information that assure that this standard has been met.

While our organizations share concerns regarding the high cost of medicines in the United States, patient safety should not be compromised under any circumstance. As pharmacists, we are on the front lines protecting our nation’s drug supply chain and ensuring the delivery of safe and effective medicines to our patients. State importation programs introduce several opportunities for mix-ups, mishandling, mislabeling, and other rogue activity that would place some of our most vulnerable patient communities at risk.

Pharmacists have been working with manufacturers and wholesalers for over ten years to implement the Drug Supply Chain and Security Act (DSCSA), a law that requires tracing of drugs through the supply chain by creating a closed drug distribution system in the U.S. to protect patients from receiving harmful drugs. DSCSA imposes protections and requires documentation that follows the drug from the manufacturer to the pharmacy, so it is clear who owned the product, and that the product is legitimate. Canada does not have a similar law, leaving our drug supply chain at risk under Florida’s program.

We look forward to continuing to work with FDA and other policymakers to implement meaningful solutions to lower the high cost of prescription drugs without compromising patient safety.

 

American Pharmacists Association

Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy

American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy

American Association of Psychiatric Pharmacists

American College of Clinical Pharmacy

American Society of Health-System Pharmacists

Hematology/Oncology Pharmacy Association

National Alliance of State Pharmacy Associations

National Association of Boards of Pharmacy

National Community Pharmacists Association

National Pharmaceutical Association

Society of Infectious Disease Pharmacists

Alabama Pharmacy Association

Alaska Pharmacy Association

Arizona Pharmacy Association

Arkansas Pharmacists Association

California Pharmacists Association

Colorado Pharmacists Society

Connecticut Pharmacists Association

Delaware Pharmacists Society

Georgia Pharmacy Association

Hawaii Pharmacists Association

Illinois Pharmacists Association

Indiana Pharmacy Association

Iowa Pharmacy Association

Kansas Pharmacists Association

Kentucky Pharmacists Association

Maine Pharmacy Association

Maryland Pharmacists Association

Michigan Pharmacists Association

Minnesota Pharmacists Association

Mississippi Pharmacists Association

Missouri Pharmacy Association

Montana Pharmacy Association

Nebraska Pharmacists Association

Nevada Pharmacy Alliance

New Jersey Pharmacists Association

North Carolina Association of Pharmacists

North Dakota Pharmacists Association

Ohio Pharmacists Association

Oklahoma Pharmacists Association

Oregon State Pharmacy Association

Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association

Pharmacists Society of the State of New York

Rhode Island Pharmacists Association

South Carolina Pharmacy Association

South Dakota Pharmacists Association

Tennessee Pharmacists Association

Utah Pharmacy Association

Virginia Pharmacy Association

Washington D.C. Pharmacy Association

Washington State Pharmacy Association

West Virginia Pharmacists Association

Wyoming Pharmacy Association

Alabama Society of Health-System Pharmacists, Inc

Arkansas Association of Health-System Pharmacists

Colegio de Farmaceuticos de Puerto Rico

Colorado Pharmacists Society

East Alabama Health

Georgia Society of Health-System Pharmacists

Illinois Council of Health-System Pharmacists

Kansas Council of Health-System Pharmacy

Kentucky Society of Health-System Pharmacists

Louisiana Society of Health-System Pharmacists

Michigan Society of Health-System Pharmacists

Minnesota Society of Health-System Pharmacists

Mississippi Society of Health-System Pharmacists

Missouri Society of Health-System Pharmacist

New Jersey Society of Health-System Pharmacy

New York State Council of Health-System Pharmacists

Pennsylvania Society of Health-System Pharmacists

Rhode Island Society of Health System Pharmacists

Texas Society of Health-System Pharmacists

Virginia Society of Health-System Pharmacists

Vermont Society of Health-System Pharmacists

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