Healthcare News & Insights

FDA orders 500 medications off the market pending further review

Roughly 500 prescription drugs have been ordered off the market by the FDA, which claims that the medications never had a proper federal review for safety and effectiveness. The medications are primarily used to treat allergies, coughs and colds. An agency director said the FDA had questions about what was in the medications, how they were produced and whether or not they were proven effective.

The FDA says patients still have access to many other prescription medications to treat those ailments, and shouldn’t face any problems due to the order. Over-the-counter medications are not affected by the order.

The order is part of an ongoing effort by the FDA to remove unapproved medications from the health care market. Most of the medications in question have been on the market since before a 1962 law that required a specific agency review for safety and effectiveness.

Critics of the FDA’s move, especially pharmaceutical makers, point out that the medications have been available for decades with no evidence that they pose any particular safety threat. Some critics also worry that the removal of so many medications will lead to higher overall prices for patients who rely on the drugs on a regular basis.

Manufactures of drugs on the list have 90 days to stop production and 180 days to stop distribution. They can seek FDA approval to get the drugs back on the shelves.

Check here for more details on the FDA action and the specific medications that fall under the order.

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