The Food and Drug Administration is a federal agency that is designated to protect and promote the overall public health of the United States. It is responsible for maintaining the quality of many consumed products of American citizens. Food, tobacco, prescription drugs and vaccines are some of the areas that the FDA supervises on behalf the general public. What may be even more intriguing is the process of how they manage to control such largely consumed products.
What do They Control?
The FDA maintains many different facets of consumed products that directly affect the overall health of the American public. Other than food and drugs, products that emit any amount of radiation also fall under the supervision of the FDA. Drugs are one of the largest areas that the agency regulates. They make sure that a specific drug is properly labeled, tested, advertised and managed correctly for human consumption.
How do They Control it?
They control all of these different aspects of drug distribution through their research of proposed medicines. A new drug must be submitted through an application process by the FDA. The Center for Drug Evaluation and Research is a division of the FDA that test and study specific drugs before released to the public. Not only do they research the specific drug itself, they study the competitive drugs already in the market.
Human trials are a major factor when researching a new drug. Three phases of trials are performed in the research center on humans, under the watchful eye of the FDA, to ensure the safety of the drug in reaction to the human body. Once the research is conducted, the data goes under review by scientists, chemists, and other top researchers to evaluate the research. If the trials prove that the number of benefits outweighs the number of negatives regarding the drug, the drug is approved for sale.
In some cases, the drug may be approved but with needed changes to the labeling of health risks.
When do Problems Occur?
The FDA can only research the results from trials done in small groups and can not predict side effects that arise when released to the American public. As well, complications can occur when people who are already taking medication mix the new drug. The FDA can not test how the drug will react with every other drug on the market.