CA Access News

January 2010

In this Issue: Features | Partner Spotlight | Calendar | Welcome New Partners | In the News | Interesting Information | Contact Us


S.A.F.E. D.R.U.G.: An 8-Step Checklist for Medicine Safety

S.A.F.E. D.R.U.G. is a "how-to" guide to help consumers identify and protect against counterfeit medicines. This eight-step checklist helps consumers judge whether their medications are safe and provides tips on what to do if a drug has been compromised.

The Partnership for Safe Medicines, which helped design this guide, is committed to helping consumers assure that the prescription drugs they are taking are safe and effective. Read more

Partner Spotlight

Riverside Medical Clinic FoundationRiverside Medical Clinic Foundation

Riverside Medical Clinic Foundation is dedicated to improving health in our Inland Empire community through education at the individual, professional and community level.

It is our philosophy that vital and pertinent medical information should be made available to the general public through a regular, planned schedule of communication utilizing lectures, seminars, forum discussions, testing programs, and publications. The Foundation funds a regular schedule of health education activities, including public lectures, support group meetings, a health and wellness newspaper Health Scene, and a patient information medical library. Typically, RMCF programs and services are free and open to the public.

Web site


Check out our CPAT partner events occurring this month!

Would you like to see your organization's event listed? Contact Charlotte Phillips at to help advertise your upcoming event.

Welcome New Partners
  • KHEIR Center
  • Lupus LA
  • Stepping Stone of San Diego, Inc.
  • Youth Speak Collective
  • 8 individual partners

Join Now


In the News

FDA warns of extortion scam targeting online prescription buyers
Los Angeles Times, January 1, 2010
Extortionists posing as federal agents have taken as much as $31,000 from frightened people who thought they would be prosecuted for purchasing their medications from outside the country, federal regulators say. The Food and Drug Administration has received 75 to 100 reports nationwide recently of people receiving calls from individuals claiming to be FDA special agents or law enforcement officials.

Discard dates on medications create discord
Pasadena Star News, January 6, 2010
The question is common, and it seems so simple. Do we need to worry about medicines going bad if they are used beyond their expiration dates? The answer is a bit more complicated than you might think

Feds mull regulating drugs in water

San Francisco Chronicle, December 22, 2009
Federal regulators under President Barack Obama have sharply shifted course on long-standing policy toward pharmaceutical residues in the nation's drinking water, taking a critical first step toward regulating some of the contaminants while acknowledging they could threaten human health. A burst of significant announcements in recent weeks reflects an expanded government effort to deal with pharmaceuticals as environmental pollutants

Would you like to share your news story? Contact Charlotte Phillips at and your organization's news story can be featured in our next edition of CA Access News.

Interesting Information

Facts About Importing Drugs From Canada

1. Drugs from Canada don't always come from Canada. According to President of CanaRX, a Canadian Web site that sells online, 70 percent of drugs sold to Americans from Canada are made elsewhere, so the drug you think you're importing from Canada probably comes from a third world country with less stringent protections than either the US or Canada.(1)

2. There isn't enough supply in Canada to satisfy U.S. demand: If half of just elderly Americans shifted their purchases to Canadian sources, it would exhaust the supply of drugs in Canada in a few months.(2)

3. The Canadian regulators don't think this is a good idea. In 2008, Manitoba regulators announced they will stop licensing Internet pharmacies, because they could not oversee operations when customers all live in another country.(3)

4. Canada isn't going to carefully scrutinize drugs bound for the United States. If pharmaceuticals are not earmarked for Canadian citizens, they are not subject to the Canadian government's safety regulations. By marking the drugs "for export only," drug exporters can bypass Canada's safety regulations and mail fake or low-quality drugs made in China, India, and other countries notorious for ineffective and sometimes deadly products to Americans using a Canadian mailing address.(4)

5. Canadian pharmacies are not subject to the FDA's jurisdiction, which means American customers aren't protected by the FDA's safety regulations. In 2003, CanaRX was warned by the FDA to stop providing Americans with medications because they were obtaining medications from unapproved suppliers and shipping refrigerated medications using plain mail services. CanaRX remains in business today.(5)

The bottom-line is that drug importation programs, including government sponsored programs, encourage Americans to gamble with their health, especially vulnerable patient populations such as minorities, seniors, and fixed income patients.

Learn more about dangers of drug importation, its link to counterfeit drugs and the issues threatening the safety of our prescription drugs, visit

For more information about importing drugs from Canada, please visit The Partnership for Safe Medicines.

1 The Windsor Star, "Drug supply called secure," March 4, 2008
2 University of Texas study, Center for Pharmaeconomic Studies based on US Government data, May 2004, conducted by Marv Shepherd
3 National Post, "Manitoba to stop licensing net pharmacies," March 13, 2008
4 The Partnership for Safe Safemedicines, "Importing Danger," 2008
5 FDA News, "FDA Warns CanaRx Services About Its Illegal Internet Website and Mail Operation Obtaining Unapproved and Potentially Risky Drugs from Canada," September 16, 2003



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