Florida governor calls for cheaper prescription drugs

Gov. Ron DeSantis pushing plan to import medications from Canada
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis holds a news conference in Lakeland on May 28, 2021.jpg
Posted at 10:39 AM, May 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-28 11:58:03-04

LAKELAND, Fla. — Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on Friday called on the federal government to push forward a plan that he says will save Floridians hundreds of millions of dollars on prescription drugs.

Back in 2019, the Florida Legislature passed a measure that would allow the Sunshine State to import medications directly from Canada instead of the U.S. at cheaper prices.

"These are the same drugs. You just get them for a fraction of the price compared to what you do in the U.S. market," DeSantis said during a news conference at LifeScience Logistics Distribution Center in Lakeland.

But for the plan to take effect, it must be approved by the federal government first.

Over the last two years, the DeSantis Administration has submitted multiple proposals to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, outlining how Florida would safely import prescription drugs into the country.

"It's been under review enough. We've followed every regulation. We've met every requirement that we were asked to meet. And we want now to be able to get this final approval so that we can finally move forward," DeSantis said.

The governor on Friday urged the federal government to green light the initiative so facilities like LifeScience Logistics Distribution Center can start importing medications.

DeSantis said Floridians would save between $80 million and $150 million through the less expensive drugs from Canada.

"This has been under review for six months. We were told if it wasn't denied last week that we should assume it's gonna be approved. But we want to get that final approval," DeSantis said.


Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis holds news conference at logistics center in Lakeland

According to the governor, prescription drug costs in the U.S. have skyrocketed more than 150% over the last 15 years.