Tobacco control bill would empower the FDA
NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted Aug. 20, 2007
The Senate's Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee approved legislation that would for the first time allow the Food and Drug Administration to regulate tobacco products. Under the measure, the FDA would have authority to restrict advertising and set standards for the industry on "reduced risk" products.
The AMA applauded the bill and urged the full Senate and the House to pass legislation this year.
"Smoking remains the No. 1 preventable cause of death in the United States, killing roughly 1,200 Americans every day," said AMA President Ron Davis, MD. "Given what we know about the health effects of smoking and the powerful addictive properties of nicotine, it is unconscionable that tobacco products are currently one of the least regulated products in our society."
The bill does not allow the FDA to ban tobacco and does not have the support of the committee's ranking member Sen. Mike Enzi (R, Wyo.), who compared it with a "peace treaty with Phillip Morris."
Note: This item originally appeared at http://www.ama-assn.org/amednews/2007/08/20/hlbf0820.htm.