Skip to main content
ad info

 
CNN.com Allpoliticsallpolitics.comwith TIME
    Editions | myCNN | Video | Audio | Headline News Brief | Feedback  

 

  Search
 
 

 
POLITICS
TOP STORIES

Analysis indicates many Gore votes thrown out in Florida

Clinton's chief of staff calls White House over vandalism reports

Gephardt talks bipartisanship, outlines differences

(MORE)

TOP STORIES

India tends to quake survivors

Two Oklahoma State players among 10 killed in plane crash

Sharon calls peace talks a campaign ploy by Barak

Police arrest 100 Davos protesters

(MORE)

MARKETS
4:30pm ET, 4/16
144.70
8257.60
3.71
1394.72
10.90
879.91
 


WORLD

U.S.

LAW

TECHNOLOGY

ENTERTAINMENT

HEALTH

TRAVEL

FOOD

Texas cattle quarantined after violation of mad-cow feed ban
ARTS & STYLE



(MORE HEADLINES)
*
 
CNN Websites
Networks image


Lawmakers reach tentative deal on prescription drug reimportation

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Congressional Republican negotiators reached a tentative agreement Wednesday on a bill that would allow for the reimportation of prescription drugs from countries who sell them at lower prices, but a final deal on the politically popular measure may not be reached until Thursday at the earliest, congressional staff members said.

The agreement was described as "conceptual" by one source who said members were waiting to see the legislative language before signing off on it.

The measure is designed to allow pharmaceutical concerns and drug wholesalers, under strict Food and Drug Administration guidelines, to reimport U.S. manufactured drugs that had been sold to other countries, and sell them in the United States at below market prices. That is possible because many governments mandate cheaper prices for drugs imported from the United States.

A White House official said the administration had not read the language. However, a spokesman for Speaker Dennis Hastert, R-Illinois, said he expected the White House to approve the deal.

"My guess is there is nothing in this bill that they (the pharmaceutical industry) will like," said Rep. JoAnn Emerson, R-Missouri. "But the goal is to allow the American people to get lower cost drugs. Our goal was not to make this easy for the manufacturers to mess it up."

House and Senate Republican leaders announced their support for prescription drug reimportation last week in effort to address the high cost of drugs for Americans - a top voter concern - before the end of the congressional session.

The measure is tied to the controversial, and still unresolved, proposal to lift food and medicine sanctions on Cuba -- because both are part of the spending package for the Department of Agriculture.

The Department of Agriculture appropriations bill has been held up for weeks over these two matters and won't move until both are resolved.

Several congressional sources said Wednesday that a Cuba deal was at hand, while others insisted it was not.

House and Senate conferees to the Agriculture bill postponed a Wednesday meeting until Thursday afternoon.

As part of the tentative agreement on prescription drugs, individuals would be allowed to personally import drugs that are approved by the Food and Drug Administration if the drugs are prescribed for personal use.

Drug manufacturers would be prevented from signing restrictive contracts with other countries that prevent those countries from reselling drugs to the United States.

Schedule I, II, and III drugs, which include narcotics, would be banned from the program. And, the law would "sunset" -- or expire-- five years after the program goes into effect.

Democratic congressional aides have also not yet seen the final details of the agreement, and say they remain "skeptical" about whether it's too watered down to have a real effect on the cost of drugs for Americans.

 
RELATED STORIES


RELATED SITES


  MESSAGE BOARD
 

MORE STORIES:

Wednesday, October 4, 2000


 Search   


Back to the top   © 2001 Cable News Network. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines.