FDA unveils strategic plan

FDA Strategic Action Plan

The Food and Drug Administration today released its five-point plan to improve consumer safety and protect the food supply.

"This strategic action plan is our coordinated effort to respond to some of the most challenging threats and opportunities for public health that we have ever faced," FDA commissioner Mark McClellan said in a statement. "These broad strategic directions represent our conclusions about how to maximize the public health impact of every FDA dollar."

FDA officials cited five areas:

* Efficient, science-based risk management. Employ technologies to reduce delays and costs of product approval and implement new strategies for food imports and food safety.

* Patient and consumer safety. Enhance the post-marketing monitoring of medical products and supplements. The FDA plans to improve reporting systems and partner with other agencies and providers to get adverse effect information quickly.

* Better informed consumers. Look for more effective ways to communicate with consumers about health risks and benefits.

* Counterterrorism. Improve the capability to respond to threats to the food supply

* A Strong FDA. Improve personnel retention and training efforts and partner with outside experts on the new initiatives.

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