Q&A: Drug manufacture and safety

Drug manufacture and safety

How can I find out if prescribed medications are made in the United States? I understand that most generics are made in China or India. That piqued my curiosity about where nongeneric drugs are manufactured. We know who distributes them but not where they are made. Has "outsourcing" put the health of our citizens at risk?

Consumers would be hard-pressed to find a "Made In" label on any finished pharmaceutical product. A prescription drug, whether generic or branded, is made of multiple ingredients, each of which may come from a facility in a separate nation. Therefore, simply listing the final production location would be misleading.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration keeps information on the origin of prescription drugs, and products often have lot numbers that can be used by the agency and the company for tracking purposes. This is especially important in cases of product recalls.

Both generic and brand-name drugs often are manufactured abroad. Regardless of where they are made, facilities that make drugs for the U.S. market must meet the FDA's manufacturing requirements. The agency has the authority to inspect facilities making products for use in the United States, regardless of whether they're in New Jersey or China.

About $2 trillion worth of pharmaceutical products enter the United States each year from more than 150 countries and territories around the world, according to the FDA. The volume of foreign-made products and valid safety concerns has prompted the FDA to increase inspections of both foreign and domestic facilities.

Definition of 'evangelical'

In recent news stories, I've seen the term "evangelicals" used repeatedly. What exactly is meant by the term? In some published articles it has seemed that it does not apply to some denominations.

The term "evangelical" is used to describe a set of beliefs, not necessarily what church people attend or how often they go to services.

While definitions vary, people are generally considered evangelical if they accept Jesus Christ as their personal savior, believe the Bible is true, consider Scripture their chief religious authority and feel a duty to bring others to Christ.

Some researchers say the term is less popular now, especially among younger Christians, because it has become identified with old-guard Christian right politics.

Texas has the most counties

What state has the most counties?

Texas is the runaway leader with 254 counties, according to data from the National Association of Counties. Georgia is second at 159. Others with 100 or more are Kentucky with 120, Missouri 115, Kansas 105, Illinois 102 and North Carolina 100. Florida has 67 counties.

Q&A: Drug manufacture and safety 04/19/10 [Last modified: Monday, April 19, 2010 1:46pm]

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