New Jersey Legislator Seeks To Regulate Manufacturers

TRENTON, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — Democrats and Republicans in Washington don’t agree on much these days, but they have come together in the House to pass legislation aimed at improving the safety of prescription drugs.

U.S. Rep. Frank Pallone, D-N.J., told WCBS 880’s Jim Smith that compounded drugs mixed at places such as a Massachusetts clinic where a meningitis outbreak began last year have been flying under the radar.

“They were simply operating in a vacuum without any real regulation,” Pallone said.

Pallone — who co-authored the bill, which he expects to pass in the Senate — says his legislation would change that, putting compounded drug manufacturers under the watchful eye of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Under the proposed law, the FDA would have the power to shut down such companies and prevent any false advertising.

“Just like it would treat any other drug,” Pallone said.

The measures comes after more than 60 people died from fungal meningitis and secondary infections linked to tainted steroids. Dozens of cases of meningitis were reported in New Jersey.

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