Ingestive Medicine Regulations
You may have seen reports that the ABC TV program, Four Corners, plans to air a program tonight on the quality and safety of vitamins and dietary supplements.
In its own promotion for this program, the ABC clearly states it follows a joint investigation by the New York Times and the PBS Frontline program and is in relation to the market in the USA. The USA and Australia treat supplements quite differently.
In the USA, the USA regulator, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), treats supplements as foods and supplements are regulated in the same way as foods. In Australia the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) oversees a two-step process for the regulation of supplements similar to that of pharmaceuticals standards.
In Australia there is an ingredient listing on the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods (ARTG), and a finished product listing or registration on the ARTG. Both steps involve a higher level of scrutiny aimed at ensuring that responsible, evidence-based and high quality products are available to consumers.
ATMS strongly believes that the practitioner is central to good natural medicine, and quality control is best effected through practitioner only product (POP). Further, safe natural medicine practice is best delivered following a quality consultation with an accredited practitioner. It is this consultation process that provides effective prescribing of natural remedies.
Our promotion of Natural Medicine Week to the Australian public is to place the practitioner at the centre of safe, effective natural therapies, including the use of supplements.
We'd like to reinforce our support for our community of members who practice safe and effective ingestive natural medicine and are obligated to remind you all to ensure you follow TGA guidelines when prescribing to your clients.