HEALTH

Legislation introduced to ‘grandfather’ all supplements up to Jan. 2007

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON — Rep. Dan Burton, R-Ind., last week introduced a bill — the Dietary Supplement Protection Act of 2011 — that would reclassify approximately 25,000 supplements launched between Oct. 15, 1994, and Jan. 1, 2007, as "grandfathered" supplements and not subject to proposed new dietary ingredient regulations.

The Food and Drug Administration recently issued draft guidance on NDIs suggesting that manufacturers would need both proof of prior marketing and proof that present-day manufacturing methods mirror those of manufacturing methods employed before Oct. 15, 1994.

"This standard could be difficult to meet for many dietary ingredients due to the lack of information on manufacturing methods used before the grandfather date," suggested a blog posted Wednesday on the FDA Law Blog site. "Moving the date for grandfather status to Jan. 1, 2007, would reduce the number of dietary ingredients for which the manufacturing method may have changed, and reduce the chance that industry no longer possesses information about the manufacturing method for a grandfathered dietary ingredient."

The bill (H.R. 3380) was referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce on Nov. 4.


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Interclick flu survey: 42% of Americans to seek flu shot

BY Michael Johnsen

NEW YORK — According to the most recent consumer snapshot survey by Interclick, 42% of Americans are planning to be immunized this year.

The survey, released Wednesday, explores consumer behaviors ahead of flu season, including sentiment on the shots, preferred treatment brands and where they go for the latest news on the flu.

This year, nearly half of Americans plan on receiving the shot in hopes of warding off the flu, with a quarter reporting they do so annually. More women than men will roll up their sleeves, with 46% of females versus 38% of males planning to get the shot. Of those who opt out of the shot, consumers who identify themselves as not getting sick often or those who have never had the flu are less likely to receive the shot.

When it comes to finding information about the flu, the Internet is the new doctor’s office for younger generations. While adults older than 35 years generally turn to their doctors as expert sources, consumers 18 to 35 years trust doctors and online sources at nearly the same rate. In addition to younger generations, women also are visiting the Internet for health information, with more than 1-in-4 primarily going online to answer their flu questions. Overall, online sources came in second as a resource for flu-concerned consumers (33%), trailing slightly to television (40%).

Once sidelined by the flu, 2-in-3 consumers thought of flu-specific brands, while 20% first thought of pain-relief medications, such as aspirins or acetaminophen.

Interclick, in partnership with KN Dimestore, fielded the study in October 2011 to survey nearly 1,300 respondents about the flu. To view this survey and future audience insight surveys go to Interclick.com/FluSeason.

 


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CDC to host Twitter chat in honor of Get Smart About Antibiotics Week

BY Allison Cerra

ATLANTA — In honor of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Get Smart About Antibiotics Week, the CDC will host a discussion on Twitter that will underscore the importance of appropriate antibiotic use.

The awareness week, which was first established in 2008, will begin Monday, while the Twitter chat is scheduled to take place on Tuesday. The discussion encourages a dialogue between healthcare professionals and members of the CDC on ways to improve antibiotic use in healthcare settings and more.

For more information, visit CDC.gov/GetSmart.


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