The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine applauds the House passage of the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act, updating the statute that regulates chemicals policy.
The bill requires alternatives to animal tests be considered and used, and places restrictions on animal testing–which are stronger than current law–that will over time facilitate the development and adoption of human-relevant, nonanimal methods. Because information obtained on chemicals will be human-relevant, products Americans use will be safer.
Principles to replace and reduce animal-based test methods and to increase the use of information from human-based and mechanistic tools are integrated into the heart of the legislation.
Since 2007, the Physicians Committee has worked to share with Congress the importance of fixing an integral part of the regulatory process–toxicity testing. We lack information on many chemicals and how they affect a diverse human population, because we rely too heavily on slow, unreliable, and expensive animal tests. The policies in this legislation—supported by a broad coalition of stakeholders and legislators—will ensure strong protection of human health and the environment by modernizing toxicity test methods, allowing the Environmental Protection Agency to collect better information more quickly than current tests allow.
We encourage the Senate to pass this bill, and President Obama to sign it into law, without delay.
Founded in 1985, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine is a nonprofit health organization that promotes preventive medicine, conducts clinical research, and encourages higher standards for ethics and effectiveness in research.