WASHINGTON -- Federal drug regulators are using a "lighter touch" in their efforts to stop a growing number of cities and states from importing prescription drugs from Canada, and the City of Boston is taking advantage of that new posture.
Acting Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Lester M. Crawford, in a recent interview with the Associated Press, said the agency will continue to evaluate programs on a case-by-case basis.
But he noted that many cities and states are using the same Canadian pharmacies and websites to fill prescriptions.
"As long as they're coming from Canada, and as long as they're from drugstores that we have some experience with, then we would have a lighter touch probably," Crawford said. "But if it escalates and there are other countries, or if there are some events that occur, that could change overnight."
Sensing an opening, Boston is forging ahead with its pilot program allowing city workers and retirees to get cheaper drugs from Canada, despite a warning letter from the FDA.
Mark Reynolds, special assistant to Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino, said yesterday that the city will continue to use
Issues brought up in the letter are no longer a problem, Reynolds said, and Wisconsin has been using Total Care and is very happy with the program.