Florida files lawsuit aimed at compelling FDA to issue decision on importing cheaper prescription drugs

Florida filed a federal lawsuit in Tampa this week aimed at trying to get the court to compel the FDA to issue a decision on a proposal that would allow much cheaper prescription drugs to be imported from Canada. 

Governor Ron DeSantis said The State of Florida's Preliminary Section 804 Importation Program (SIP) plans were filed with the FDA more than 600 days ago but have seen little to no movement at all since. 

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"I'd hate to think that, you know, the Biden administration would not approve it just because it's Florida, because they have issues with Florida politically. I hope that that's not the case," said Governor DeSantis in Lakeland. 

The lawsuit also accuses the FDA of ignoring a public records request for information on the plan. Standing in a distribution center in Lakeland, the governor disputed some of the safety concerns that federal regulators have. They worry about the imported drugs being tainted or not up to par. 

Initially, the state would focus on bringing in HIV and AIDS medications, diabetes drugs, hepatitis C and drugs to treat mental illness. 

Joining the Governor Wednesday, was Marion county resident Bob Levelly, who said rising drug prices have put him between a rock and a hard place. 

"This next month in September, we're going to have to decide either it's going to be medicine or food and that's a big decision," he said. 

FOX 13 reached out to the FDA for comment. They referred us to their website which has the latest updates on the importation of drugs originally intended for foreign markets