Monday, September 22, 2008

McCain, Obama rethink drug reimportation: aides

From Reuters:
U.S. presidential candidates Barack Obama and John McCain are reviewing their support for allowing individuals to import cheaper prescription drugs in light of tainted medicines and other goods made in other countries, their advisers said on Thursday.

Reimportation, as the practice is known, has been controversial for years, even as some supporters have arranged trips to Canada and Mexico for patients to stock up on cheaper medications.

But recent scares involving chemical-laced batches of baby formula and the blood thinner heparin -- both made in China -- have raised new concerns that safely bringing in additional medical products from overseas could be tougher than expected.

"Both candidates were in favor of reimportation and sort of subsequent to the heparin incident (there's) a lot less enthusiasm," said Dora Hughes, a health policy adviser to Democratic candidate Obama. ...more

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