Importing drugs gaining momentum

Boston Globe:

2 chains urge OK for drug imports

CVS, Walgreens add to growing support

The nation’s two largest chain drugstores, CVS and Walgreens, launched a challenge to the nation’s drug manufacturers yesterday by calling on the Bush administration to develop a legal, safe channel for Americans to buy imported drugs.

CVS Corp.’s Tom Ryan, chairman and chief executive of the Rhode Island company, led the way with an unexpected and dramatic appeal for drug importation at a Washington meeting of an administration task force on the issue.

Walgreen Co., asked by the Globe for reaction to Ryan’s remarks, said it has been studying the question for two years and for the first time publicly stated its support of imports.

The option of importing medication (i.e. from Canada) is going to be inevitable and it’s nice to see that some of the major pharmacies beginning to support the trend. Cost of medication wasn’t a factor when being trained in medical school and residency, but it is a huge part of many patients’ reality. There are many who cannot take potentially life-saving medication solely because of cost.

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