About a dozen states have established initiatives seeking to open up trade with Canada and other countries to import medications at substantially lower prices than are available in the U.S. Some of these programs are Internet-based and available to all consumers; others incorporate importation into a state employee health plan or other state pharmacy benefit; others have taken steps to directly license pharmacies outside the United States for their citizens? use. States have also sued the federal government seeking waivers to allow importation, and have passed resolutions directed at Congress seeking action on this issue. NLARx is working with state legislators to reduce drug prices through a variety of means, including supporting negotiating prices with drug manufacturers as is done in Canada and the European Union, Australia and other industrialized countries. Importing lower-priced medications is an interim step towards the goal of a reformed system of prescription drug purchasing in the U.S., which would include government price negotiation and opening up the U.S. market to parallel trade.

Researching this Issue

Model state laws and best practices, testimony supporting these initiatives, background information and research materials including reports, legal materials and news articles are posted here, as well as information on pending federal legislation and reports related to importation. Other relevant materials may be found on the issue pages relating to Pricing, which has studies on drug prices in other countries, and Trade, which has information on trade agreements and negotiations and the Working Group on Prescription Drugs and Trade. See also the Related Links below to connect to other organizations and materials relevant to this issue.

Model Legislation
May 12, 2008
H.B.7 - An Act Relating to the I-Save RX Prescription Drug Program|>>more
Aug 15, 2004
Vermont Web Reimportation Law|>>more
Feb 18, 2009
Testimony before the Vermont Senate Committee on Health and Welfare|>>more
Apr 28, 2005
Maine LD 1178: Drug Reimportation|>>more
Feb 17, 2005
Before Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor & Pensions: Drug Importation|>>more
Legal Briefs and Opinions
Sep 19, 2005
Federal Court Decision in Vermont lawsuit challenging FDA's refusal to grant reimportation waiver|>>more
Related News
Sep 28, 2010
Dallas Morning News
Texas Seniors Get Drugs From Online Canadian Pharmacies|>>more
Apr 20, 2010
Senator Dorgan, Governor Schweitzer Push for a North Dakota-Montana Pilot Program to Lower Prescription Drug Costs.|>>more
Apr 16, 2010
New Report Stresses Safety Risks to Americans from Chinese-Made Pharmaceutical Ingredients|>>more
>>view all News
Jun 30, 2009
Prospects for Legalizing Drug (Re-)Importation to the United States|>>more
Jun 22, 2006
The Economic Impact of Parallel Import of Pharmaceuticals|>>more
Sep 20, 2005
Annals of Internal Medicine article comparing US and Canadian Drug Prices|>>more
>>view all Reports
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