November 21, 1997

Strengthening and Modernizing the FDA

President Clinton Signs Law to Strengthen and Modernize the FDA:

The FDA has served America well. Today, with a bill I'm about to sign into law, we can ensure that it will serve America well into the 21 century, and I hope serve as a model again for how we can maintain our goals of pursuing the public interest and adjust our means to the possibilities and the challenges of a dramatically new era.

President Clinton,
November 21, 1997

Today, President Clinton signed into law "the FDA Modernization Act of 1997," critical legislation that will improve the regulation of food, medical products and cosmetics, and prepare the FDA for the 21st century. This new law represents the culmination of several years of effort by the Administration and Congress to reach common ground on how to amend the drug, device, and food laws. This Act, the first major food and medical products reform legislation in 35 years, includes numerous initiatives championed by the Clinton Administration that will ease the regulatory burden on industries, protect consumers, and cut red tape, making government operations faster and more efficient.

FDA modernization efforts already underway have reduced drug and medical device approval times to record lows while maintaining consumer protections. Under the President's leadership, the FDA has also ensured that the unique needs of children are protected. The law President Clinton signed today not only builds on this effort, but also expands the FDA's resources. Key provisions of the new law include:

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