2011-09-02 / Top Stories

Measures To Block Expired Meds

The Council and mayor approved new legislation that will prohibit retailers and individuals from selling expired medication. The Council heard complaints from constituents who identified this problem at flea markets, garage sales and other venues.

This bill will empower the Department of Consumer Affairs and the NYPD to take action against any person found selling expired over-thecounter medication and protect the health and safety of consumers who purchase over-thecounter medication from vendors and retail stores. Under the new legislation, any person found selling expired medication will be subject to a maximum fine of $250 for the first violation and fines of up to $500 for any subsequent violations.

Violators will also be held liable for civil penalties ranging from $100-$250 for the first violation, and $250-$500 for following violations.

“This legislation will ensure the safety of those who rely on over-the-counter medication to stay healthy by improving the enforcement against the sale of expired over-the-counter medications and keeping them away from consumers,” said Council Speaker Christine C. Quinn.

“Over-the-counter medication is not guaranteed beyond its expiration date, and may have an adverse effect on those who unknowingly take it.”

“This legislation will help prevent the distribution and flow of expired medications,” said Council Member Ruben Wills.

“The sale of expired over-the-counter medications has serious health implications. The potency of medication decreases over time and using medication after its expiration creates a greater likelihood that a person will take more in order to increase its effectiveness. It is the responsibility of anyone who is selling over-thecounter medications to put the health and safety of consumers ahead of profits and sales.”

“No person would walk into a store with the expectation that the medicine they intend to purchase may be expired — and yet the sale of expired medications is taking place in our city today,” said Council Member Dan Garodnick.

“For reasons of both health and fairness to a consumer, this practice should not be allowed to continue. Intro 541 will help to ensure that it won’t.”

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