CSPI Reacts to IOM Report on Dietary Supplements

April 1, 2004

A report on dietary supplements was released today by the National Academies' Institute of Medicine. The panel developed a general process for evaluating the safety of dietary supplements.

"The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) commissioned this report and now it is time to act to protect consumers," said Michael F. Jacobson, CSPIís executive director. "Congress should immediately fund a systematic review of both the safety and the efficacy of all major dietary supplements. It should also give the FDA better tools to protect the public from unsafe or ineffective supplements."

The IOM called for mandatory reporting of safety problems by supplement manufacturers. "Thatís a step in the right direction, but itís not far enough," said Bruce Silverglade, CSPIís Director of Legal Affairs. "The burden of proving a supplement safe should be shifted back to manufacturers where it belongs." Legislation advocated by Senator Richard J. Durbin (D-IL) and Senator John McCain (R-AZ) would allow FDA to require manufacturers to demonstrate safety but only after the FDA receives reports of serious adverse reactions.


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