Natural remedies, multi vitamins, herbal teas and homeopathic substances could soon be strictly regulated in Canada or banned all together! Since Vanessa’s Law was first written in 2013, the Canadian Pharmacists Association has advocated for its extension to natural health products.
What is Venessa’s Law?
Patients Safety Institute of Canada states: “The Protecting Canadians from Unsafe Drugs Act, also known as Vanessa’s Law, is intended to increase drug and medical device safety in Canada by strengthening Health Canada’s ability to collect information and to take quick and appropriate action when a serious health risk is identified. It will be mandatory for hospitals to report serious adverse drug reactions (serious ADRs) and medical device incidents (MDIs) to Health Canada, effective December 16, 2019. “
Vanessa’s Law is named after Vanessa Young, a fifteen-year-old girl who died of a cardiac arrhythmia after being given Prepulsid® (cisapride) for a stomach disorder. It is officially known as the Protecting Canadians from Unsafe Drugs Act.
Vanessa’s Law, introduced in 2013, amends the Food and Drugs Act to help protect Canadians from drug and medical device risks by strengthening Health Canada’s ability to gather post-market safety information and act when a significant risk is found.
The law also empowers Health Canada to order recalls, impose harsher penalties for dangerous products, and force drug companies to revise labels or conduct additional testing on products.
Why Venessa’s Law on Natural Remedies?
According to a provision in 2023 budget, the Canadian federal government hopes to strengthen its regulatory authority over natural health goods such as vitamins and homeopathic medicines. The budget suggests amending the Food and Drugs Act to include natural health products in the Protecting Canadians from Unsafe Drugs Act (also known as Vanessa’s Law). Since it was first written in 2013, the Canadian Pharmacists Association has pushed for Vanessa’s Law to be expanded to include natural health products.
This modification would enable regulators to respond more forcefully when health and safety concerns are raised about natural health goods that are available on the market.
What seems to be a logical idea to protect Canadians from wrong labeling, false advertisement to unsafe practice of natural remedies, could also very well be the take over and monopoly of pharmaceutical companies and their organizations over all medicine for Canadians.
Natural products which are none prescription and can be bought over the counter as supplements such as Zinc, probiotics or Omega-3 fatty acids could soon be only bought when prescribed by a family physician. How about herbal teas, homeopathic medicine like globules or plant extracts?
Many commonly used natural goods typically contain glucosamine, gingko, or echinacea. In new federal budget and the Canadian Pharmacists Association agenda, these products could soon be strictly regulated or prohibited.
Many believe this could be another step in government and pharmaceutical industry overreach into alternative health practices that have healed people hundreds if not thousands of years.