Rubio and FL Reps Call on FDA to Approve Import of Canadian Prescription Drugs

Rubio and FL Reps Call on FDA to Approve Import of Canadian Prescription Drugs

Why has this program been on hold for so long?

Jackson Bakich
Jackson Bakich
November 3, 2022

With rising prescription drug costs throughout the nation, Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) implemented a program labeled the Canadian Prescription Drug Importation Program. This effort, which was created alongside the Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA) which was designed to allow the state of Florida to import Canadian prescription drugs in hopes of reducing the prices. However, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) is highlighting the fact that DeSantis’ effort has been stuck in the FDA approval process since 2020.

In other words, the program is in a bureaucratic limbo.

Rubio, alongside five Florida U.S. Representatives cosigned a letter to the Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Robert Califf asking to “expeditiously approve AHCA’s proposal.”

“The Biden Administration, which wants to lower drug costs for Americans, especially its older citizens, continues to delay the approval of Florida’s proposal intending to do exactly that. Since AHCA first submitted its SIP proposal in November 2020, AHCA has worked diligently to answer the FDA’s questions and make suitable adjustments…However, the FDA has failed to provide a substantive update since November 2021. AHCA officials have attempted to reach out to the FDA for months but have received no additional requests for information or a timeline since a meeting in May 2022. This situation is particularly frustrating as information has come to light that the FDA is actively working with other states on developing their SIP proposals while Florida’s program remains stalled,” write the legislators.

Could this move be calculated by the Biden administration? Is it possible that the President does not want to give the state of Florida (and therefore Gov. Ron DeSantis) a win before election day? Either way, Rubio and Co. are calling for action.

If the Biden Administration is serious about lowering the cost of prescription drugs, then the FDA must do its job and follow through with the State of Florida’s drug importation plan. We look forward to your prompt response and action on this important matter,” they conclude.

Those signing the letter other than Rubio include Mario Díaz Balart (R-FL), John Rutherford (R-FL), Gus Bilirakis (R-FL), Neal Dunn (R-FL), and Brian Mast (R-FL).

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Jackson Bakich

Jackson Bakich

Born in Orlando but raised in Lake County, Florida, Jackson Bakich is currently a senior at Florida State University. Growing up in the sunshine state, Bakich co-hosted the political talk radio show "Lake County Roundtable" (WLBE) and was a frequent guest for "Lake County Sports Show" (WQBQ). Currently, he is the Sports Editor of the FSView and the co-host of "Tomahawk Talk" (WVFS), a sports talk radio program covering Florida State athletics in Tallahassee.

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