FDA commissioner backs a third class of drugs

April 2, 2007

DA Commissioner Andrew C. von Eschenbach, M.D., recently told a group of attendees of the Consumer Healthcare Product Association's annual executive conference in Naples, Fla., that in order to increase consumer access to healthcare products, stakeholders should explore "new ways that might include the opportunity to think through and pursue the process of a third class of drugs regulated by FDA."

FDA Commissioner Andrew C. von Eschenbach, M.D., recently told a group of attendees of the Consumer Healthcare Product Association's annual executive conference in Naples, Fla., that in order to increase consumer access to healthcare products, stakeholders should explore "new ways that might include the opportunity to think through and pursue the process of a third class of drugs regulated by FDA." When asked about his projected timetable for the creation of a third class, von Eschehbach said, "The process is timely, so it should begin now." He described products that would be included in the potential pharmacy drug class as "medications that can be available without the need for a prescription by a healthcare professional but are delivered in the context of being able to have patients guided and directed and instructed about their appropriate use."

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