The HHS Importation Proposed Rule

Last month the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) published a new notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) related to the importation of finished drugs from foreign supply chains–initially, only Canada but expandable in the future to other countries. The proposal is the result of President Trump’s initiative to lower the price of some medicines and it would invoke Section 804 of the Food, Drug and Cosmetics Act (FD&C)–inserted in the early 2000s–that envisions importation programs, under certain strict conditions. Programs under Section 804 can only be implemented if the Secretary of HHS certifies that the they will pose no additional risk to the public’s health and safety, and will result in a significant reduction in the cost of covered products to the American consumer (see “Can Trump/Azar/Sharpless Eliminate Parts of the DSCSA to Enable Importation?” and “Here We Go Again. Florida Flirts With Opening Door To Counterfeits“). Those are high bars. So high, that no Secretary of HHS has been willing to pursue Section 804 Importation Programs (CIPs) until the current one. Will the HHS proposed rule result in programs that pose no increased risk to American consumers? Let’s take a look and see if we can find the answer.

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The Partnership for DSCSA Governance Is Up and Running

Early rejected Logo for the PDG

The most exciting thing happening lately with the Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA) is the setting up of a new non-profit organization aimed at coordinating the development of “…a comprehensive shared vision for interoperable drug tracing...” so all companies can comply in 2023 and beyond (See “PDSA’s Proposal for Governance of DSCSA Phase II Interoperability” and “PDSA Brainstorms Vision For DSCSA Governance Organization With Stakeholders“).  The Pharmaceutical Distribution Security Alliance (PDSA) initiated the development of that new organization last year and we now have its name:  The Partnership for DSCSA Governance, Inc., or PDG.  I am told their website will be set up in the next few weeks, so until then, I have posted several of their public documents for RxTrace readers.  Let’s take a look at them.

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