US to boost India staff overseeing drug imports

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Associated Press

Posted on February 21, 2014 at 1:02 PM

Updated Friday, Feb 21 at 3:01 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — The head of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration says her agency will add more inspectors in India to better monitor drugs from the country's burgeoning pharmaceutical industry, even as her agency also seeks closer cooperation with Indian regulators.

FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg says the FDA will expand its staff in India to 19 from 12 as it tries to assure the safety of medications from India. Hamburg spoke with reporters following an eight-day trip to the Southeast Asian nation, which has grown into the U.S.'s second-largest supplier of medications, behind only Canada.

But that growth has come with increased scrutiny from FDA regulators, who have issued a series of warnings letters and import bans to some of India's largest drugmakers over manufacturing and quality control problems.

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