FDA Legislation Update

My last post on Vital Votes about a recent FDA initiative not warranting alarm caused quite a stir -- and received well more than 100 comments.

Despite what I feel was a "false alarm" with the FDA initiative noted previously, Senate bill S1082 -- The FDA Revitalization Act -- does present some threat. This upcoming bill (which could be voted on as early as tomorrow) could be yet another one of the FDA's sneaky tricks. Again, I paid my attorney who defends against FDA actions to review this bill and provide a quick summation:

My Attorney's Review of S1082

There are several different versions of this bill floating around. One is simply a reauthorization of the user fees legislation. Another creates a not-for-profit foundation who is to advise FDA on scientific matters. Many are concerned that this foundation is a backdoor way of attacking DSHEA. The foundation, however, has no regulatory authority but it could evaluate safety issues related to all products regulated by FDA and provide recommendations.

So, in a sense, it could have an impact. The threat to supplements at this point would be minimal because the funding is no more than 1.5 million a year -- but could, in years to come, be more significant if the foundation is actually provided with funding through private sources. I do believe some are using the bill to hype up business.

Quite frankly, I oppose it because it creates a useless Foundation that will be subject to the whims of politicians and does not add anything to the National discourse on health care. And it could have a negative impact on complementary and alternative health care in the future (but not the foreseeable future).

Summary -- Plus Action Steps You Can Take

Whether the threat is short-term or long-term, you can take action by calling or faxing your Senators and telling them you are opposed to bill S1082 -- the Food and Drug Administration Revitalization Act (there is probably not enough time to write them about it at this point). You can locate your Senators at http://www.senate.gov.

Many comments from my 4/27/07 FDA article also had helpful suggestions.

For more information, you may also want to view an article by Byron Richards, CCN about this issue: Dietary Supplements Threatened, Freedom in Danger.

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