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Access Board Organizes Working Group on Access to Drug Labels

October 31, 2012

News source: U.S. Access Board

The U.S. Access Board is undertaking an initiative to improve access to prescription drug labels. As part of this effort, the Board has organized a stakeholder working group to develop best practices for making information on prescription drug container labels accessible to people who are blind or visually impaired or who are elderly. This group includes representatives from advocacy organizations and from industry, including the:
American Council of the Blind
American Foundation for the Blind
Blinded Veterans Association
Council of Citizens with Low Vision International
CVS/ Caremark
Express Scripts
Metro Washington Association of the Deaf Blind
National Community Pharmacists Association
National Council on Aging
National Council on Independent Living
National Council on Patient Information and Education
National Federation of the Blind
Rite Aid
U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention

The working group will develop best practices for pharmacies on providing independent access to prescription drug container labels. Various alternatives will be explored, including braille, large print labels, and auditory technologies such as "talking bottles" and radio frequency identification tags. The Board gained the responsibility to address this issue under the "Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act" which was signed into law in July. The law also calls upon the National Council on Disability to conduct an informational and educational campaign in cooperation with the stakeholder working group to inform the public, including people with disabilities and pharmacists, of the best practices.

For further information, contact Susan Crawford at, (202) 272-0029 (voice), or (202) 272-0082 (TTY). Those interested in this initiative can sign up to receive further updates.

Previous Article - Board to Lead Effort to Develop Guidance on Accessible Drug Labels (7/13/12; updated 9/7/12)

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