New Jersey amends law to facilitate distribution of dietary supplements by physicians.
- In recent years, the dietary supplement industry has grappled with concerns about regulation and enforcement action at the state level. In terms of state-specific regulation, New Jersey law prohibited physicians from distributing more than a 7-day supply of any drug and imposed pricing restrictions on drug sale. The law did not distinguish between pharmaceuticals and dietary supplements, even though a 7-day supply restriction is a non-starter in the supplement area.
- New Jersey has now amended its law to exempt from the restrictions any “licensed physician, podiatric physician, or chiropractic physician who dispenses food concentrates, food extracts, vitamins, minerals, herbs, enzymes, amino acids, tissue or cell salts, glandular extracts, neutraceuticals [sic], botanicals, homeopathic remedies, and other nutritional supplements.” The law received early and continued support from a leading trade association, the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN).
- The lifting of New Jersey’s prior restrictions is being welcomed as a positive development in the supplement industry and one that will allow doctors to integrate supplements into patient health care regimens. Still, the industry must remain attuned to regulatory and enforcement activities at the state level. Many will recall that the widely-publicized 2015 investigation of the dietary supplement industry — targeting major retailers for marketing allegedly misbranded products — was kickstarted by the New York Attorney General before expanding to other states. The significance of state-level activity in the supplement area should not be discounted.