Monday, January 28, 2008

F.D.A. Plans to Post Inspectors Overseas

Guess you won't need to buy a house in Virginia if you work for the FDA...

WASHINGTON — The Food and Drug Administration intends to post inspectors to embassies and consulates throughout the developing world in hopes of improving the quality of the food and medicines increasingly flowing to the United States, a top official said Thursday.
The agency’s commissioner, Dr. Andrew C. von Eschenbach, said that he wanted to have “boots on the ground” in nations like India and China and regions like Central and South America and the Middle East.
The agency already sends inspectors to dozens of countries each year to inspect pharmaceutical plants and clinical trial sites. But Dr. von Eschenbach said in a briefing with reporters that he wanted the agency’s presence abroad to be on an “ongoing and continuous basis rather than episodic and periodic.”
“Right now, we come, we leave,” he said.
The inspectors would primarily “build capacity and bring others in to do inspections that are certified,” Dr. von Eschenbach said.

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