Both House and Senate committees on the Environment met this week and passed both House Bill (HB) 1131 and Senate Bill (SB) 5154, the Wrap Act, the legislation that aims to reduce waste in Washington and sweeps in a review process for animal drug packaging for FDA and USDA products, potentially creating a barrier to getting critical drugs into the state to treat animals.
Despite heavy lobbying, the only amendment to the bill was to exempt the primary packaging that’s in direct contact with vaccines and biologics from the USDA, but not the external packaging. If only primary packaging is exempt and not the external packaging, we could still experience disruptions in obtaining vaccines and biologics. All FDA drugs are also on the table requiring review by a new system that will be set within the WA Dept. of Ecology.
Imagine your patients with life threatening injuries or illness, and because of WA’s new law, you are unable to obtain the necessary drugs to treat them.
Packaging must protect the product with tamper-resistant seals. It must protect against biological contamination, physical damage, and conditions that will alter the product, as well as accommodate detailed labeling requirements and protect public health.
One the system is set up, manufacturers will have to submit their product to Washington for review, in a currently unknown process, making it impossible to know how or when a drug may be allowed to be shipped into the state. To comply with FDA and USDA requirements, packaging of each product must go through an extensive process and approval by both agencies to guarantee its’ integrity. If WA requires a product to change its’ packaging, redesigning will take months of development followed by full FDA review and approval.
Imagine your patients with life threatening injuries or illness, and because of WA’s new law, you are unable to obtain the necessary drugs to treat them. This could be the result if we’re not successful getting animal drugs exempted from these bills.
It’s imperative we keep working to exempt all animal drugs from both of these bills. Please contact your legislator ASAP and tell them how dangerous this will be to animal and public health. Call their offices, send them emails, ask your clients to call, too.
Next week, we’ll send out more communication to help you and your clients make these connections with legislators. They need to hear from all of us.
To find out who your legislators are, click here.