New Rules for Natural Health Products?
As Bad Science Watch’s first project out of the gate this fall, we’re responding to a promising public consultation released by Health Canada on September 7th, 2016.
Since the inclusion of cosmetics and non-prescription medications (over-the-counter drugs) into the purview of the Non-prescription and Natural Health Product Directorate (NNHPD), there have been glaring issues with the casual way that natural health products (NHPs) have been approved, including homeopathy. In Consulting Canadians on the Regulation of Self-Care Products in Canada, an entirely new framework for the approval of self-care products was released.
This update is something that we’ve been working towards since our inception in 2012 and the release of the Health Canada guideline, Pathway to Licensing for Natural Health Products. While this new framework is a big step in the right direction, we have to let Health Canada know of both their successes and failures on this front. Bad Science Watch is preparing a response that we will make public before the October 24th, 2016 deadline, but we need your help to ensure our message gets through to Health Canada.
This consultation is open to the public and those opposed to new regulations, like the Canadian Health Food Association, are going to rally their considerable forces to oppose fundamentally necessary ideas such as mandatory recalls and science-based approaches to claim evaluation.
With pressure from manufacturer-led lobby groups NHPs were left out of Vanessa's Law in 2014 - a glaring omission that left NHPs as the only commercial product class in Canada that the government cannot order a mandatory recall on. We can’t let those opposed to science put consumers in danger again especially with the dangerous findings of adulteration, substitution and contamination in these products. The public needs the protection of these powers to keep shoddy and dangerous NHPs off the shelves.
It is vital that you visit Health Canada’s website today to add your voice to the consultation. We will need reasoned voices to counter the fallacy and fantasy of the "health freedom" movement, and keep the makers and sellers of these products accountable to Canadian consumers.