FDA Gains New Powers to Block Illicit Drug Imports

A new US law that aims to tackle the national opioid crisis has been welcomed by FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, who said it gives the agency new powers to stop illicit drugs imports.

The SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act – which was signed by President Trump this week – will help FDA intercept illegal medicines entering the US via international mail facilities (IMFs), said Gottlieb.

The measures include a higher level of collaboration between the FDA’s Office of Criminal Investigations (OCI) and US Customs and Border Protection (CBP). OCI special agents assigned to the IMFs intend to work more closely with CBP and FDA regulatory staff, which identify and refer suspect shipments, and with the Department of Justice, which brings criminal cases to prosecution.

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