Bill would identify safe online pharmacies

Supporters of a bipartisan bill to crack down on illegal online pharmacies hope they can attach the measure to a must-pass Food and Drug Administration bill later this year.

Rep. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) introduced the House version of the bill Tuesday evening. The proposal would create a registry of safe online pharmacies, with the goal of steering customers away from illegal websites and counterfeit drugs.

A similar bill in the Senate drew bipartisan support — its co-sponsors are Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) and John Cornyn (R-Texas).

Cassidy picked up a Democratic co-sponsor in Rep. Mike Ross (D-Ark.).

A broad range of stakeholders, including pharmacies as well as Google, support the measure, Cassidy’s office said. Cassidy is hoping to attach the pharmacy measure to an FDA reauthorization that Congress has to pass by September.