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HDA Statement on Proposed HHS Rule on Prescription Drug Importation

December 18, 2019

ARLINGTON, Va. — The Healthcare Distribution Alliance (HDA) released the following statement regarding the Department of Health and Human Services' (HHS) proposed rule permitting prescription drug importation.

“As an industry that saves healthcare between $33 and $53 billion each year by ensuring the safety, reliability and efficiency of the supply chain, HDA and its pharmaceutical distributor members are committed to ensuring that lifesaving medications are affordable and accessible. However, prescription drug importation is not the answer.

“Such policies will not only jeopardize the collaborative effort under way to implement the Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA), but ultimately, threaten patient safety without any meaningful cost reductions. While we acknowledge that the administration and proponents of state importation plans are mindful of the safety protections offered by traceability requirements under the DSCSA, significant concerns remain about the feasibility of an importation program from an operations perspective.

“Further, as an HDA Research Foundation study indicates, federal importation policies would lead to at least $1.1 billion in unforeseen costs for the healthcare system, regulators and patients alike.

“HDA looks forward to engaging with HHS as this proposal goes through the rulemaking process, while highlighting the effects of prescription drug importation policies on the pharmaceutical supply chain.”


The Healthcare Distribution Alliance (HDA) represents primary pharmaceutical distributors — the vital link between the nation’s pharmaceutical manufacturers and pharmacies, hospitals, long-term care facilities, clinics and others nationwide. Since 1876, HDA has helped members navigate regulations and innovations to get the right medicines to the right patients at the right time, safely and efficiently. The HDA Research Foundation, HDA’s nonprofit charitable foundation, serves the healthcare industry by providing research and education focused on priority healthcare supply chain issues.


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