Will Re-Importation of Prescription Drugs Become Reality?

Dec 16, 2019
President Trump recently tweeted that the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) “will soon release a plan to let Florida and other states import prescription drugs that are MUCH CHEAPER than what we have now!” It is expected that The Food and Drug Administration will release a proposal in January.

Under the plan, state governments could seek permission from HHS to import certain prescription drugs from Canadian suppliers. Florida, Colorado, Vermont and Maine are in the process of drafting such proposals. Florida officials have identified 19 prescription
drugs for importation that present the most cost savings. However, supply concerns
remain. “It is important to recognize that Canada’s market for pharmaceuticals is too small to have any real impact on U.S. drug prices,” said Canada’s acting Ambassador to the U.S. Kirsten Hillman.

In addition, it is not clear how Canadian drug re-importation may negatively impact the  Drug Supply Chain and Security Act requirements designed to prevent counterfeit medications from entering the U.S. drug supply.