Thursday, March 05, 2009

Drug Imports May Become Legal in U.S. Under Obama, McCain Plans

From Bloomberg:
Americans may soon be able to buy cheap drugs imported from other countries without fear of breaking the law, now that a five-year push in Congress for new rules has gained support in President Barack Obama’s budget.

A proposal to allow drug imports was introduced today by Senator John McCain, an Arizona Republican defeated by Obama for the presidency, along with Democratic Senator Byron Dorgan, of North Dakota, and Republican Senator Olympia Snowe, of Maine. Obama called for the changes in his budget last week, and views the measure as one way to reduce health-care costs so that medical coverage for the uninsured can be expanded.

Brand-name drugs in other countries cost as much as 70 percent less than in the U.S. Allowing imports would save Americans $50 billion over the next decade, including $10 billion for the U.S. government, the lawmakers said. Dorgan and Snowe previously introduced similar legislation opposed by the pharmaceutical industry and former President George W. Bush. ...more

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