On November 27, 2013 President Barack Obama signed the Drug Quality and Security Act of 2013 (DQSA) into law (see “It’s Official, President Obama Signs H.R. 3204, DQSA, Into Law“). That act has many provisions, but one is to preempt all existing and future state pharmaceutical serialization and pedigree laws like those that previously existed in California and Florida. Because of the preemption language contained within the DQSA, the information contained within many previous RxTrace essays is now obsolete. Some essays are entirely obsolete and some are only partially obsolete. This is because many of these essays contain ideas and discussion about topics that will also apply to the new federal law in almost the same way that they applied to the California and/or other state laws that are now inoperative. In those cases, the ideas and discussion are not obsolete, only their application to the state law(s) is now obsolete.
To address this issue I have Continue reading Preemption: What Does It Mean?
The current drafts of the nationwide pharmaceutical track and trace (Pedigree) bills on the floors of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives both include an initial lot-based pedigree requirement that may be based on paper or electronic documentation (see “The Politics Of Federal Track & Trace Legislation”). What is a lot-based pedigree and how is it different from one based on package-level serial numbers? Let’s take a closer look at the kind of system that these bills would require. Keep in mind that the Senate bill would mandate this kind of pedigree system for the next 10 years and the House bill would make it permanent.
First of all, according to both bills, pharma manufacturers would be required to Continue reading The Federal Lot-Based Pedigree Before Congress
On January 17, 2013 a federal grand jury indicted three individuals in 28 counts connected with Cumberland Distribution, a pharmaceutical distribution company licensed in Tennessee, on charges of conspiracy, mail fraud, money laundering and obstruction of justice. Notably, some of the evidence used against the alleged co-conspirators are the pedigrees that they allegedly forged in an attempt to make their business look legitimate to their unsuspecting customers.
Now, as the press release about the indictment from the U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ), Middle District of Tennessee points out, “An indictment is merely an accusation and is not evidence of guilt. All defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.” So let’s just look at the evidence and how the DoJ is using it to build their case against the defendants in this case. From that we can see what impact pedigrees might have in other cases like this.
The charges are for activities that Continue reading How Pedigrees Protect The Drug Supply: The Case Against Cumberland Distribution
I attended the Partnership for Safe Medicines (PSM) Interchange 2011 conference on October 27 in Washington DC. (I’ll cover that event more fully in a future essay.) For me, the event couldn’t have been better, but I measure events like this perhaps a little differently than most people. The agenda is important and the quality of the speakers is absolutely important, but in my view those are simply the things that lead to the one thing that can transform a merely good conference into a great conference: the quality of the attendees.
(The quality of the attendees is exactly why I like the HDMA Track and Trace Seminar. BTW, this year’s HDMA event starts this Thursday).
In the case of this year’s PSM event, I rate the quality of the attendees very high, and that’s because I had a number of great conversations with some very knowledgeable people during the breaks and at the social event the evening before. That was my interaction with the attendees, not the speakers. One of the topics of conversation surrounded the question of what exactly it was the led to the successful challenge to the Prescription Drug Marketing Act (PDMA) pedigree provisions in the RxUSA v. HHS court case and appeal and whether or not the same thing might occur with other drug pedigree laws.
AN IMPORTANT QUESTION GOES UNANSWERED
One of the first speakers at the PSM event was U.S. Representative Jim Matheson (D-UT), sponsor of H.R.3026, the “Safeguarding America’s Pharmaceuticals Act of 2011” which was introduced into the House of Representatives on September 22, 2011. There are some differences, but the core of this new bill is basically the same as Continue reading Impact of RxUSA v. HHS On Future Pedigree Legislation
I recently read in Pharmaceutical Commerce online magazine about the apparent resolution of the RxUSA lawsuit that had delayed implementaton of a couple of the pedigree provisions of the Federal PDMA (Prescription Drug Marketing Act). While Pharmaceutical Commerce did its usual great job of providing historical context, I thought it might be an appropriate topic for the RxTrace blog. But before I had time to document the history of the PDMA in my own words, Brian Daleiden beat me to it in the Supply Network Blog. So rather than writing my own version, I gladly refer you to his post. Between the Pharmaceutical Commerce article and Brian’s post, I have nothing more to say right now.
The Supply Network Blog is a fairly new publication of TraceLink, the successor to SupplyScape, my former employer. I look forward to hearing more from their blog in the future so I recently subscribed. Check it out and see what you think.