In an attempt to keep up his battle with medical industry and drugmakers, President Trump will take his first big action since he took office to push for new FDA regulations: a proposal to set minimum manufacturing standards for the pain medication acetaminophen.
In the past, Trump has been criticized by doctors and health organizations for a failed attempt in January to lower the FDA’s threshold for the standard of “non-food manufacturing” — a measure that would have permitted many more over-the-counter drugs to be marketed without a specific warning.
The effort fizzled after he decided to exclude over-the-counter drugs with a major consumer user-use category from his “better label, better life” plan, which called for additional measures to deter consumption of opioid-based pain medications, like for nausea, that have been described as major contributing factors in the drug epidemic.
In the past, however, the president has lashed out at American companies — like Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer and Merck — who he said were sowing the overdose epidemic through sales of opioids. On the campaign trail, Trump called for a federal tax on such drugs, leading him to tag the pharmaceutical industry with an often-used sobriquet, “killers.”
Trump will visit New Hampshire, a state that has been hit particularly hard by opioid-related deaths, to tout his proposed new FDA rules. The American Medical Association — which strongly opposes the administration’s stance on non-food manufacturing issues — has already indicated that it will oppose the new rules.
This post has been updated to include additional comments from the American Medical Association.