CSIS Video: FDA as a Global Actor

This post was written jointly by Sarah Simpson and myself.

The Food & Drug Administration, better known as the FDA, is the regulatory arm of the US government responsible for ensuring the safety of the food and drugs Americans consume. As our food, drugs and products travel from around the world to our table, the FDA’s role has become increasingly more globalized.

Recently FDA commissioner Dr. Margaret Hamburg sat down with the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), Global Health Policy Center to discuss the FDA’s more globalized role. She argues that the FDA serves an often underappreciated role in the global economy, and that it is important that they continue to receive funding to build partnerships, supply chains, and monitoring systems.

Because of this increasing globalization, the FDA has been pursuing more international partnerships and relationships to ensure the safety of imported goods as well as domestic ones. This has led them to create physical offices in several countries around the world such as Chile, South Africa, China, and India.

While the FDA by no means has an unblemished record, this is yet another example of a global health initiative threatened by budget cuts (particularly in an election year), and why we need to fight to maintain funding for global health programs.

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